Fifty-five years before the death of Breonna Taylor in Louisville, Kentucky, the killing of another Black woman, Alberta O. Jones, sent shock and grief through that city’s Black community.
In 1965, Jones, a trailblazing attorney in Louisville, was found dead, floating in the Ohio River — the victim of a murder that’s still unsolved today. Thirty-four-year-old Jones was the city’s first female prosecutor, and a charismatic fixture in the Black community, helping educate and register people to vote.
Despite multiple investigations over nearly 60 years, there are no official motives or suspects in her killing. In 2018, her case was added to the federal government’s cold case list and is one of the few that remains open.
In episode 4, James explores what an open case on the list looks like through the life and death of Alberta Jones — and talks to the person who never gave up fighting for answers.
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The multi-platform Un(re)solved project investigates the federal government’s effort to grapple with America’s legacy of racist killings, mainly against African Americans, through the Emmett Till Unsolved Civil Rights Crime Act. For more, visit: frontline.org/unresolved
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The Un(re)solved podcast was produced by FRONTLINE at WGBH and powered by PRX. Some of the interviews with family members of the next of kin were produced in collaboration with StoryCorps, a national nonprofit whose mission is to preserve and share humanity’s stories in order to build connections between people and create a more just and compassionate world. The Civil Rights and Restorative Justice Project at Northeastern University served as an academic advisor to the project.
The FRONTLINE Dispatch is made possible by the Abrams Foundation and by the GBH Catalyst Fund. Additional support for the FRONTLINE Dispatch comes from the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center. Support for Un(re)solved provided by PBS; the Corporation for Public Broadcasting; the Abrams Foundation; the Jonathan Logan Family Foundation; The WNET Group’s Chasing the Dream, a public media initiative that examines poverty, justice, and economic opportunity in America, with major funding by The JPB Foundation and additional funding from The Peter G. Peterson and Joan Ganz Cooney Fund; the GBH Catalyst Fund; the FRONTLINE Journalism Fund with major support from Jon and Jo Ann Hagler on behalf of the Jon L. Hagler Foundation; the Lisa and Douglas Goldman Fund; the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center; and The Barbra Streisand Foundation. Funding for FRONTLINE is provided through the support of PBS viewers and by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Major funding for FRONTLINE is provided by the Ford Foundation. Additional funding is provided by the Abrams Foundation; the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation; Park Foundation; and the FRONTLINE Journalism Fund with major support from Jon and Jo Ann Hagler on behalf of the Jon L. Hagler Foundation.