Charges against John Perdew '64 of "assault with attempt to murder" a policeman were dropped this week in Americus, Georgia.
Perdew and four others were jailed August 8, 1963 and held for 87 days without bail under an 1871 Georgia "insurrection" law. The five were freed when a three-judge federal panel ruled the law unconstitutional, but Americus officials immediately brought other charges against them.
White SNCC worker Ralph Allen of Melrose, Massachusetts, was tried and convicted Dec. 11, 1963 on the "assault" charge, but his conviction and two-year jail sentence were overturned by the Georgia Supreme Court. The Court ruled that white defendants are entitled to a trial by a jury from which Negroes have not been excluded.
When Perdew returned for trial last Monday, he learned that the prosecutor had dropped the charges.