Segregationist former Alabama Gov. John Patterson dies at 99

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Former Alabama Gov. John Patterson has died at the age of 99. His daughter says he died Friday. Patterson entered politics as a reformer after his father’s assassination but was criticized for failing to protect the Freedom Riders from angry white mobs. A segregationist as governor, he drew criticism when Freedom Riders were attacked while in Alabama. Patterson did nothing to protect the activists who were seeking to integrate bus waiting rooms and lunch counters. He later voiced regret for what happened. He ended his political career on the Court of Criminal Appeals, where he continued to write opinions into his 80s.

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