In a courtroom usually set aside for the violence adults unleash on each other, the names of two dead children hung like ghosts. Then detail by wincing detail, a Mecklenburg prosecutor brought Drakeford Watts and Mariya Owens back to life as he told the public for the first time how they died.
In light of today’s social climate surrounding allegations of police brutality, one cold case from 2002 may merit a second look. The unsolved murder of Franklin Freeman, who performed drag as Aretha Scott, was suspected to involve the police. Freeman died just five days before he was scheduled to testify against a member of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department (CMPD).