Coach Cuch was a tall colored man who was a star basketball player at Carver High years ago. Bruce asked him if the boys were at practice the day of the robbery and he said that they were.
“Chris was goofing off during practice so I made him run fifty laps around the court.”
“Coach Cuch, where was Torrence?”
“Torrence was practicing his lay ups while Chris did his laps.”
Attorney Harris asked Coach Cuch on cross examination, if Chris and Torrence had ever gotten into trouble before at school.
“Boys will be boys. They get into the usual trouble of talking too much in class and cutting up during practice. Nothing more serious than that.”
Bruce continued with his defense and called old lady Pierce to the stand. Harris objected because he did not see why Bruce would need to call her. Bruce told the judge that Widow Pierce could testify that the boys were passing her home at their usual time on basketball practice days. The robbery took place on one of their basketball practice days. Old Lady Pierce slowly climbed up the steps to the stand. She greeted the judge and everyone else in the courtroom. Widow Pierce was a retired school teacher. She taught practically every white child in our community. Bruce asked Widow Pierce about the Sampson boys.
“They seem like good boys. I watch them all the same.”
“What do you mean “watch them” Widow Pierce?”
“Daddy always told me that coloreds have to be watched, no matter how obedient they are or how good they behave. I watch them ever day they pass my home. One day Torrence stopped in front of my rose bush and I stood up to see what he was doing. I saw that he was tying his shoe lace. When he finished he stood, greeted me, and moved on.”
Bruce asked about Chris.
“Chris and Torrence were together.”
The judge asked if the prosecution had any questions for Widow Pierce and he said that he did.
“Were you wearing your glasses that day of the robbery?”
Widow Pierce is very sensitive about her glasses. She does not believe that it is lady like to have to wear such things. It takes away from the eyes but she can’t see a lick without them.
“Yes, I did have them on young man. Even if I didn’t, I can see just as well without them. I saw well enough to grade several of those ‘C’ and ‘D’ papers you gave me when you were my student.”
There was a slight chuckle in the courtroom. Harris was beet red at this point. Bruce told the judge that the defense rested. The judge called for a lunch recess. Closing argument were to begin after lunch.
To be continued.