The Lynching: The Epic Courtroom Battle That Brought Down the Klan by Laurence Leamer:
Michael Donald’s body was still hanging from a tree when State Senator Michael Anthony Figures arrived on Herndon Avenue. A crowd stood across the street whispering anxiously about the horror. Most of them were black, and as their numbers kept growing, the Mobile police had blocked off the street and put up barriers to keep them back from the murder scene. The African Americans believed they were witnessing the archetypal crime against the black man. The assembly kept growing as people brought their children and their grandparents.
Figures knew there hadn’t been a racial lynching in many years, but he believed that he was at the scene of such a death. The thirty-three-year-old black politician and lawyer feared what might happen when black people across the Alabama city came to the same conclusion.