By Michael Dorstewitz
An Idaho appellate court struck down the conviction of a 45-year-old black man accused of sexually battering a white 13-year-old girl because the prosecuting attorney used a line from the Confederate anthem “Dixie” in asking the jury not to “look away, look away, look away” from the evidence.
The three-judge panel unanimously agreed that Canyon County Deputy Prosecutor Erica Kallin’s recitation of the lyrics during her rebuttal closing argument was “pernicious racism” that may have influenced the jury and therefore caused reversible error, according to the Daily Mail, which reported:
Kallin began quoting ‘Dixie’ lyrics as a response to the defense’s closing arguments that focused on the perceived weaknesses in the state’s case, including the failure to gather physical evidence to help prove the girls’ testimony.
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“I always think of this one song. Some people know it. It’s the Dixie song. Right? ‘Oh I wish I was in the land of cotton. Good times not forgotten. Look away. Look away. Look away,’” Kallin said during the state’s closing arguments.
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