From the King Center Website:
On December 8, 1999, a jury of twelve citizens of Memphis, Shelby County, TN concluded in Coretta Scott King, Martin Luther King, III, Bernice King, Dexter Scott King and Yolanda King Vs. Loyd Jowers and Other Unknown Conspirators that Loyd Jowers and governmental agencies including the City of Memphis, the State of Tennessee, and the federal government were party to the conspiracy to assassinate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr
I thought this comment on 9/11 Blogger by Danse summed it up well:
Every year our beloved leaders wax eloquent on MLK day. We hear excerpts from the “I have a dream” speech. We are told that a lone nut took his life. We are led to believe that equality for African Americans was his sole interest in life.
Never are we informed about the increasingly radical direction Dr. King charted in his last years. Like Malcolm X he expanded his analysis to US imperialism and class struggle. He described himself as a “democratic socialist” and was in the process of organizing a poor people’s march on Washington when the Feds took him out. He supported the struggle of unions across the country. He decried US militarism.
“In the early 1960s, when King focused his challenge on legalized racial discrimination in the South, most major media were his allies. Network TV and national publications graphically showed the police dogs and bullwhips and cattle prods used against Southern blacks who sought the right to vote or to eat at a public lunch counter.
But after passage of civil rights acts in 1964 and 1965, King began challenging the nation’s fundamental priorities. He maintained that civil rights laws were empty without “human rights” — including economic rights. For people too poor to eat at a restaurant or afford a decent home, King said, anti-discrimination laws were hollow.
Noting that a majority of Americans below the poverty line were white, King developed a class perspective. He decried the huge income gaps between rich and poor, and called for “radical changes in the structure of our society” to redistribute wealth and power.
Here are the closing arguments from that very trial by William Pepper: