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MLK: FBI Sides with Segregationists

Nov. 18, 1962 - The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King charged today that FBI agents in Albany, Ga., side with the segregationists. For that reason, the 33-year-old integration declared, the FBI has not done an effective job in investigating beatings and other intimidation of Negroes who have been pressing for racial equality in the southwest Georgia city. The Justice Department declined to comment on Dr. King’s remarks, which were made during an interview at New York’s Riverside Church, where he had just preached a sermon. “One of the great problems we face with the FBI in the South,” Dr. King said, “is that the agents are white Southerners who have been influenced by the mores of the community. To maintain their status, they have to be friendly with the local police and people who are promoting segregation. Every time I saw FBI men in Albany, they were with the local police force.” The Albany police, led by Chief Laurie Pritchett, have jailed hundreds of Negroes and whites who protested on the streets against segregation, Dr. King pointed out. He said the Government should consider assigning agents, probably from outside the South, “who are at least in agreement with the law of the land.” “If an FBI man agrees with segregation, he can’t honestly and objectively investigate,” Dr. King declared.


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