U.S. state pardoning black woman executed in 1945
"This was a case that cried out for mercy," said Garland Hunt, a board member. Hunt said Baker should have been convicted of involuntary manslaughter and that the state made a "grievous error" when it did not commute her sentence.
An all-white jury sentenced Baker for killing Knight in 1944 in rural southwest Georgia, despite hearing testimony from Baker that the 67-year-old had held her against her will and tried to rape her.
Baker, 44, claimed she grabbed Knight's gun and shot him in the head as she resisted his advances. Neighbors, however, had told authorities that the two often drank together and had a consensual sexual relationship.
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