On Dec. 8, a jury in Memphis, Tenn., deliberated for only three hours before deciding that the long-held official version of Martin Luther King Jr.'s assassination was wrong.
The jury's verdict implicated a retired Memphis businessman and government agencies in a conspiracy to kill the civil rights giant.
Though the trial testimony had received little press attention outside of the Memphis area, the startling outcome drew an immediate rebuttal from defenders of the official finding: that James Earl Ray acted alone or possibly as part of a low-level conspiracy of a few white racists.
Leading newspapers across the country disparaged the December verdict as the product of a flawed conspiracy theory given a one-sided presentation. The Washington Post even lumped the conspiracy proponents in with those who insist Adolf Hitler was unfairly accused of genocide.
There was indeed reasons to doubt the official story. And in this post-"Saddam's nooks" age, a willingness on the part of the general public to do just that.