Black Lives Matter activist Pamela Moses will not stand trial a second time on the charge that she illegally registered to vote, Shelby County District Attorney Amy Weirich announced Friday.
In a press release, Weirich said all charges related to the matter had been dropped. However, Moses is banned for life from voting in the state of Tennessee because of a 2015 felony conviction. She had no public comment about the decision when asked on Friday, but local activists and supporters had plenty to say.
“We are pleased that these bogus charges were dropped,” said Karen Spencer McGee, a Black Lives Matter Memphis activist, also known as “Mama Peaches. “Pam Moses should not have been charged in the first place. Pam said over and over that she thought her probation was over, and she was eligible to register to vote.”
McGee said a press conference with “significant” content is scheduled for Monday (April 25) at 10 a.m. at the National Civil Rights Museum. It is unclear whether Moses will attend.
Weirich came under fire for prosecuting a case against Moses, which supporters denounced as unfair and discriminatory.
“Pam was intentionally targeted,” said McGee. “There was never a legitimate case against her. Corrections officials came out and admitted that they made a mistake. Pam simply presented the papers they signed with her voter registration. She did not ‘illegally’ register to vote. That was not on her.”
During a week-long jury trial earlier this year, Moses was convicted of entering false information on a voter registration form. The case garnered national attention when Moses was sentenced to six years and a day. It contrasted sharply with voter-misconduct cases involving Republican, white men who supported Trump and received no jail sentences, extremely low fines, or brief periods of probation.
A second trial for Moses had been scheduled for Monday (April 25).
“Amy Weirich didn’t want that smoke,” said McGee. “The nation is watching, and we were going to make sure our voices were heard. Pamela is barred from voting in the state of Tennessee, so we are not totally satisfied.”
Only days before Christmas last year, Moses was taken into custody, spending 75 days in jail before going to trial, Moses reportedly told supporters that her cell was “freezing,” and she was denied proper treatment after contracting COVID-19.
Weirich said in her statement that Moses spent a total of 82 days behind bars, and called the custody period “sufficient.”
Moses had already begun serving her six-year sentence when her motion for a new trial was granted in February.
In February, Criminal Court Judge Mark Ward overturned her conviction and granted Moses a second trial — which now won’t take place.
Prosecutors said in February that Moses’ sentence was overturned and a new trial ordered because the Tennessee Department of Correction failed to turn over “a necessary document” in the case. That document proved officials had erroneously indicated that Moses’ probation had ended.
Judge Ward said at the time that he was treating that error as “an inadvertent failure.”