WATCH LIVE: Gov. Northam grants posthumous pardons to 7 Black men executed for the rape of a white woman

RICHMOND, Va. – Gov. Northam is meeting with relatives and activists who are seeking a posthumous pardon for Martinsville Seven.

The Martinsville Seven are seven Black men, executed after they were convicted of raping a white woman in 1949. Now decades later, they continue to question the integrity of the investigation.

The group, the Martinsville Seven Initiative, is advocating for a closer look at the case. The men were convicted of raping a white woman in 1949 and executed just two years later. Some of their trials lasted only a day. The initiative says the color of their skin, not the evidence in the case, decided their fates.