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  • Writer's pictureMacabre Emporium Pod

Episode 53 - Mark Redwine and the Greensboro Sit-Ins

SARAH:

Mark Redwine and the Murder of Dylan Redwine

Mark Redwine, Poop Eater
Mark Allen Redwine, Father of missing Dylan Redwine

Mark Allen Redwine was born on August 24, 1961. He was living in La Plata County in Colorado in 2012 and had been through two bitter divorces by this time, and was currently in a custody battle with his latest ex-wife Elaine Hall over their 13-year-old son, Dylan Redwine.


This had been a pretty devastating custody battle, and it severely impacted 13-year-old Dylan and his older brother, Cory. Both of the boys wanted to live at home with their mom. In fact neither of them wanted anything at all to do with their dad. The family perspective was very strained - especially when it came to the relationship between the brothers and their dad.


During a visit in 2011, the boys waited for the dad to go to bed and then got on his laptop. While they were on the laptop, they found some pretty disgraceful selfies of dead old dad. But instead of continuing to look, they waited for their dad to go to bed and then snuck the laptop closed and took it to their room. They continued to search what was on the computer and found even more disgusting selfies from their dad. 


They found pictures of their dad, Mark, wearing a wig. That’s not horrible though, could’ve been drunk and having fun, right? Unfortunately no. They also found pictures of him in the wig, a red bra on, and a diaper. Others he was wearing the wig, the red bra, and a turquoise tank top. But that surely couldn’t be the worst of it, right? Right…they found pictures of him in all of the above with his diaper full of shit. They found pictures of him licking his own shit within the diaper. They even found pictures of him face down eating the shit in his diaper. There are pictures of him with his own shit smeared around his mouth after consuming it. The pictures of him in the tanktop show him with floral women’s underwear that were defecated  - shoved into his mouth and just hanging there. 


Both boys were absolutely disgusted. But with the strained relationship, Cory decided to snap some pictures with his phone to hold onto as blackmail against his dad. Cory wound up getting into an argument with his dad and sent him a text that read:

“Hey beautiful, you are what you eat…look in the mirror.”

Clearly letting his dad know that he knew about the selfies he had taken and left on his laptop. The arguing continued, but Dylan didn’t know anything about that part until after both boys had returned home to their mom. But it gave the young, Dylan, an idea.


Around Thanksgiving of 2012, there was a standing court ordered visitation for Dylan to be at Mark’s house. Dylan thought about it and made a plan of action since he was being forced to go see his dad. Dylan sent a text to his brother Cory that said:

“Hey, send me those poop pics of papa because he gave me a speech about you guys being a bad example and I want to show him who really is.”

On November 18, 2012, Elaine had no choice but to make Dylan pack and prepare for a flight to see his dad. She had no choice because she would face prosecution for withholding their child during a court ordered visitation. So she took Dylan to the airport and sent him off to his dad. Dylan protested the whole way, even telling other relatives that he didn’t want to go, but again, Elaine had no choice in the matter.


She said goodbye to Dylan, put him on the plane and he was off.


When Dylan landed at the Durango-La Plata County Airport, Mark was there to pick him up. Surveillance footage showed that there was no personal interaction between the father and son. On the way to Mark’s house, Dylan told him that he was going to go stay with a friend and Mark got pissed. 


Dylan decided to use this moment, and the anger between him and his dad, to confront Mark about everything that he and Cory had found on that laptop. He then sent a text to the friend he had plans to go stay with, and let them know he would be there around 6:30 the next morning.


But 6:45 rolled around, and the friend texted Dylan to see if he was still coming. His friend never got a reply.


Mark said that he had left Dylan at home on the morning of November 19, 2012, while he had errands to run. He said he came home afterwards and when he walked in nothing seemed off. Nickelodeon was on the TV in the living room, and there was a bowl on the counter that had been used for cereal. However, he checked for Dylan through the house, and he was nowhere to be found. There was no sign of a break in, there was nothing out of place in the house. Mark was worried that Dylan may have been abducted, or worse - ran away and had been attacked by animals that call the mountains home.


Mark did the next thing he could think of, and he called the police to report his son missing. Due to the proximity of Mark’s house to the mountains, police started a massive search for miles around the home. Community members aided in the search as well as conservation officers and various types of law enforcement.


Elaine was informed that Dylan was missing and she set out on the six hour drive to La Plata to help in the search for her son. While en route, she was deep in thought, and sent Mark a surprising text. It said:

“He wouldn’t just leave, he would have called me. I am so suspect of you right now. How could he just disappear?”

When Elaine got there she immediately joined the search for Dylan along with all of the others. Torches and flashlights lit the way for Elaine, the community members and law enforcement that were all putting themselves in danger while searching for Dylan in the dark wilderness.


But at Mark’s house it was a different story. He was at home by himself, and went to bed at 11pm. Clearly this didn’t look good for him - the whole community is out looking for Dylan, even his ex-wife drove six hours to get there and look. They were searching right by his house and he couldn’t be bothered to help. 


Things would continue looking worse for Mark, especially after he started appearing in the media to talk about his ‘missing’ son. 


His previous ex-wife (not Elaine) came forward to shed some light on Mark and her custody battle with him and how he handled that one. Unfortunately this also did nothing to help Mark and how he currently looked. He once told his ex-wife during their custody battle that if she ever needed to get rid of a body to just leave it in the mountains and the animals would eat it. He also had told her during the height of their own custody battle that he would kill his kids before he’d ever let her have them. After all of these revelations came out, hope for Dylan’s safe return dwindled.


A while after the search for Dylan had started, Mark, Elaine and Cory appeared on the Dr. Phil Show to talk about Dylan’s disappearance. It became not much more than a bitching match between Mark and Elaine, as all they seemed to want to do was accuse each other of things. Mark was offered a polygraph test and he refused it.


After Mark’s appearance on the Dr. Phil show, suspicions grew in his direction and warrants were written to search his home and property. Police investigated the inside of Mark’s house again and found traces of blood in the living room. 


The home was searched by cadaver dogs. They detected there had been a corpse in the living room as well as the bed of the truck. They also indicated positive for the smell of a corpse in the washing machine as well as on the clothing that Mark said he was wearing on November 18, 2012 - the day Dylan went missing.


This would be the biggest break in the case so far. And everything would change from this point, a long seven months since Dylan went missing.


On June 27, 2013, just a short eight miles from Mark's house, there were partial remains found about one hundred yards off of an ATV trail. They were the remains of a boy. The remains were gathered and processed quickly, and they were determined to be the remains of 13-year-old Dylan Redwine. In that exact instant, Dylan's missing persons case turned into a murder investigation.


As if the close proximity of the ATV trail wasn’t enough to link Mark, he also drove an ATV and a witness saw him driving in that area of mountains in April 2013 before he left town and refused to come back after Dylan's remains were found in June.


Finding Dylan's remains changed the route of the investigation, entirely. Unfortunately, the remains didn’t give investigators a cause of death. You see, Dylan's skull was missing so there was no way to prove whether or not he had wandered off and been attacked by wildlife or if this was, indeed, a homicide.


Two years later, on November 1, 2015, a couple of hikers found a skull 2 miles down the road from where Dylan’s body had been found. The skull was tested and it did belong to Dylan.


Dylan’s skull showed a deep fracture as well as many knife wounds to the head, mostly around the left eye. Wildlife experts stated there was no wildlife that would be able to make those types of wounds, nor would an animal pick up and carry a skull around that far from the rest of his body. The skull had been moved by someone purposely, most likely to help throw off the body being identified. With this, the investigators had what they needed to prove murder and many people believed at this point it was Mark that killed him


On July 17, 2017, Mark was arrested for first degree murder and child abuse. The court battle was long as it kept being delayed due to the COVID pandemic. His court date was actually pushed back 3 times before actually happening in 2021.


The Prosecution argued that Dylan had confronted his dad about the nasty pictures he and his brother, Cory, had found and that it sent Mark into a blind rage, where he killed his son. They noted Mark's strange behavior and not helping search for his own “missing” son as a form of proof that he had already known Dylan was dead. A lot of this case was based on circumstantial evidence.


The Defense argued things such as how the family dynamic had been strained between them and that’s why Dylan had taken off, keeping up the ruse that Dylan ran away and was killed by some animal in the woods surrounding the mountain.


The Jury disagreed. They went to deliberate and came back with a unanimous decision that Mark was guilty for the murder of his son, Dylan.


There was an impact statement from Elaine Hall (mother) and she said:

“Dylan was 13 years old when you took his life. He had his whole life ahead of him. He would have done it and would have done it well. You robbed him of his youth, robbed him of what he would have been. You never take accountability. When I think about what happened that night, Dylan looking up at his dad…You never had remorse. What were you thinking when you saw his big blue eyes? I don’t think it even fazed you. I think you need the maximum sentence - you have a lot of soul searching to do."

Dylan’s brother, Cory, also made an impact statement, but didn’t read it to his dad, he read it to the judge.

“The past nine years have been nothing short of misery. Over the years I thought about what I could have done to protect Dylan from our dad. I can’t bring Dylan back. I can’t talk to Dylan so I pray to him. I dream of him…Dylan is my hero and became more of a man in 13 years than Mark did in 60.”

Judge Jeffrey Wilson came down on Mark hard. He said to Mark:

“As a father, it’s your obligation to protect your son, keep him from harm. Instead of that, you inflicted enough injury on him to kill him in your living room. I have trouble remembering a convicted criminal defendant that has shown such an utter lack of remorse for their behavior. This leads me to believe that you need significant punishment… and you need to be removed from society for a long period of time”.

Mark stood in front of the court, stoic, and showing no emotion whatsoever as he waited for his sentence to be handed to him. And it was definitely handed to him.

Mark Redwine was convicted of second-degree murder and child abuse and sentenced to fourtyy-eight years.


Mark didn’t speak at all during his sentencing, other than when the judge asked him if he had anything to say, and his reply was:

“No, your honor, I do not.” However, Mark did write a statement and the judge read it for the court. In the statement he wrote, “Innocent of all charges. Miscarriage of justice. Fake conviction. Sham trial. I take this circumstance very seriously and want to  make clear I too have lost a child I love more than life itself. I will fight for true justice. Not for myself, but for Dylan. I have always shown remorse for the things that I am guilty of. Stand against fake justice”.

 

DAVID:

The Greensboro Four

The Greensboro Four, Civil Rights Activists
The Greensboro Four - (L-R) ibreel Khazan (formerly Ezell Blair, Jr.), Franklin McCain, Joseph McNeill, and David Richmond

Did you hear that?

 A spark is something not much to give much thought to as we know sparks can be positive or bring disaster.

 A spark can start an engine.

A spark can turn on a light.

A spark can light a fire to either bring warmth or destroy. 

But for four students of North Carolina, a spark inside of them for change would change the world. 


Post-War America, where men, women, and children of all races and creeds were to be free but, many were not. African Americans are still finding themselves being treated differently because of Jim Crow laws still in effect.


Jim Crow laws were put into effect in the 1870s during the reconstruction period after the Civil War where these laws mandated racial segregation in all public facilities in the former Confederate States of America. 


For example, we all know and have been taught in school buses in public transportation blacks had to ride in the back and whites got to sit in the front of the bus. Along with separate bathrooms theater and store entrances and so on. 


These laws would be named after a menstrual character named Jim Crow who was used to depict blacks negatively. These laws would stay in place until the 1960s. 


Even when fighting through both World Wars, the Army, Navy, and Marines stayed segregated with beliefs at the time that African Americans were not as capable in combat as Whites, but as a possible future subject known as the Red Tails proved this to be completely false. President Harry Truman integrated the military in 1948 but, in the civilian world it was still everyday life. 


Even with these small examples of “separate but equal.” we, lack a better term for experiencing it ourselves with stepping into their recreated bus station waiting rooms. Where the Whites Only side was recreated with nice benches with a back to rest against and was clean, with a fan running in the corner whereas the Colored Only side was just a simple bench and they had the room painted to look just unkempt. With actual drinking fountains outside in the same manner. 


Even with Rosa Park’s ride in 1954 to set everything in motion still more needed to be done, even more so after the murder of Emmett Till. Four students from Greensboro, NC would do such things. 


David Richmond, Franklin McCain, Ezell A. Blair Jr. and Joseph Mc Neil would meet for the first time in the Fall of 1959 as incoming freshmen at Agricultural and Technical State University. They would spend time often together discussing multiple topics from current events, politics, and religion as most do when they go to college.


 Of course, their own Civil Rights was an often discussed topic as they didn't see themselves as any different from the white men and women they were taught not to address in public unless spoken to. Where like them and many others were taught if you were on the sidewalk with a white man passing you were to look at the ground and if a woman was walking on the sidewalk you were to steer clear and walk in the street if you had to. As much as they talked about this they knew they had to do something but were unsure to do. 


It would become clear to them what they needed to do after Joespeh was refused service at a lunch counter trying to buy a hotdog at a Greyhound Station after making his return trip to school after Christmas Break. He was told he had to go to the counter around back but he didn’t see why he had to do it as it wasn’t any different than where he was already standing. 


The four of them soon after hearing what happened knew what they needed to do. They needed to find a lunch counter in Greensboro and take a seat wanting to be served but not move from their seats until they were severed. Being in the South and with tension high as it was they would have to approach this in ways to make a statement but, also they were inspired by Dr. King’s non-violent protest tactics they would not respond to anything that could happen to them. Frank Mc Cain would recall that this almost didn’t happen as Ezeel Cain Jr. tried to get out of it by using the excuse of needing to go to the bathroom but the other three forced him to stay until they all agreed and had their plans.


On the afternoon of February 1, 1960, the four boys soon to become men would make their way to Woolworth’s Five and Dime on South Elm St. in Greensboro which made this the perfect location as many sources said that this Woolworths was the only one with a segregated lunch counter but, the rest of the store was not. Before taking their seats, they would all make small purchases to have receipts showing they were paying customers of Woolworths and not there just to cause trouble.


All four of them would sit in the Whites-only section and order coffee and a donut with cream on the side,  knowing they would be refused service. Even telling the waitress what they wanted she would tell them:

“You know we don’t serve colored people here” Frank Mc Cain would explain “Oh we beg to disagree with you, you already have served us and have our receipts to prove it.”

Not happy with their answer she would remind them she can’t serve them here at this counter and enlisted the help of Geneva Tisdale a black waitress working for Woolsworth to try and talk some sense into them.


Even with telling them they aren’t supposed to be here, and suggesting they leave before something bad happens and they are just hurting race relations by their actions. But the four did not move. Frank Mc Cain would remember how he felt when he took his seat and would say:

“15 seconds after sitting at the counter, I felt so clean and invincible and wouldn’t felt cheated if I  died in that moment, I had reached his mountain top and seen the other side and felt whole and redeemed for my actions.”

Store manager Curly Harris would also try to convince the four to leave to keep them out of trouble but again, said nothing and didn’t move and his supervisor told him:

“They will soon give up, leave, and be forgotten.”

 While in their sit-in protest this first day an elderly white woman would end up approaching them as she leaves. They notice her approach and speak to God “Just let her call us some nasty names and spit on us and go on about her business.” But she doesn’t she tells them she was proud of you boys and wishes they had done this 10 years sooner.


Soon after people started forming crowds to see what was going on and the police were called, and the responding officer tried to intimidate them to leave by thumping his billy club in his hand and pacing behind them but they stood their ground and didn’t acknowledge his presence. Powerless due to them having receipts showing they were customers of the store he would just throw his hands up to the manager and lean up against the wall just watching what was going on along with the crowds. To avoid any possible violence the lunch counter would close early and upon them leaving photographer Jack Moebes would snap the most recognized photo of the Greensboro four they would be known later on after being tipped off on what was going on at the store.


Word had spread about what they had done and making plans to return the next day and ask the campus leaders to join them to fill more seats but none of them showed because like sparks starting a fire, their actions spread fast between other colleges and churches they are joined by 100s by the end of the third day. 


Day four as more and more people are showing up to show their support the tension is also growing. Anit-desegregation protestors would start to ramp up their abuse by pouring coffee over their heads, smearing condiments on their clothing, and shoving lit cigarettes into their pockets. Even with all this they still stayed motionless and silent as if they were the stools themselves. 


Even with anti-protestors filling the seats supporters did end up filling the seats of the lunch counter. White Students of the Greensboro Women’s College Ann Dearsley, Marilyn Lott, and Jeannine Seaman break the rules of their college by leaving the grounds without permission to show their support as they found it ridiculous about the rules for anyone just wanting a cup of coffee. They make the mile and half walk to the store not knowing what they are walking into. Dearsley described the air being thick and the front of the store being filled with angry white men. When they reached the counter three white men got up  giving them their seats, thinking they were there to support them but it was clear they were there to support the GB4 when Ann Dearsley tells them “Oh we think there was someone here before us that needed to be served.”


Ann would go on to sketch scenes of what was going on inside the Woolworths store. Even though being white they were also verbally abused for showing support for the GB4 and began to worry if they could make it back to campus unharmed when the store closed. But they were escorted out in a circle of huge black men around her and the other two as they recited the lord’s Prayer out loud as they made their way back through the store to a waiting taxi for the women that took them back to campus.


By the end of the week, it was clear that the GB4 and other protestors were not going anywhere as their numbers grew by the day bringing Greenboros to a halt. Politicians and business owners are starting to lose money as their stores are now occupied by at least 300 protestors in support of the GB4. Along with the growing racial tensions in the area people are avoiding the area. 


Feb, 6th the protests would come to pause for two weeks and try to negotiate a solution after a bomb threat was called in at Woolworths and the building was cleared by police even though one witness did notice that Curly Harris the manager who originally tried to get them to leave never left the store during the evacuations.


With the GB4 now the tip of the spear of the Civil Rights movements like their parents before them, even more sit-ins are being carried out nationwide. Sit-ins would carried out in 54 cities in eight different states eight weeks later after the first four put a down payment on their manhood standing up for what they believed in.  Workshops and meetings are being held to train sit-in participants on what to expect and how to respond. Some of the videos I watched showed in these workshops them being “beaten” and verbally abused and how to protect vital areas of their body from violence. Greensboro stayed mostly non-violent during their sit-ins but in other cities, the police would be less tolerant of these sit-ins being held and physically removed with excessive force and arrest them for trespassing. Not only the police did, but also the pro-segregationists. I did find an audio simulation from the National Center for Civil and Human Rights in Atlanta, GA. They suggest closing your eyes with your hands out flat in front of you and close your eyes.


The total estimated number of people who participated in these nationwide sit-ins is upwards of 70k after watching scenes of violence being carried out on the news. 


By July of this year, Woolworths had lost 200k in profits due to these sit-ins and declared on July 25th that all lunch counters no matter the location would be desegregated. 


The first black to sit at the Greensboro, NC location would be their employees and days later Joe Mc Cain would stop in for apple pie and a coffee that he fought for the right to have wherever he wanted. But he remembered the pie not being that good and the coffee at best being mediocre and wouldn’t come back again. However, the GB4 would still come back to meet to celebrate their success of standing up for what they believed in. Their final meeting together until David Richmond passed away from Cancer in 1990 at the age of 42. 


Even after they won the fight in Greensboro it wouldn’t until four more long years of protests and brutal violence before the Civil Rights Act was signed on July 2, 1964, by President Johnson making it illegal for businesses to prohibit discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex or national origin.


In the final days of Woolworth’s going out of business African American leaders of Greensboro, NC, and curators of the Smithsonian in Washington D.C. knew something had to be done to preserve this building due to its historical significance. An eight-foot section of the original counter is now on display at the National Museum of American History in Washington D.C. where you can see theater presentations about the sit-ins performed and participate in a sit-in next to it. 


Xavier Carnegie who performs this remembers during an interview that a six-year-old boy asked him if this was real and said it was hard to describe how it made him feel but that was a moment he knew this is what they were fighting for that when children would wonder if things like this really took place. 


February 1, 2010, the Woolworths on S. Elm in Greensboro surviving member of the original sit returned for the grand opening of the International Civil Rights Center and Museum. 


Joseph Mc Niel would go on to join the airforce and retire in 2000 at the rank of Major General

David Richmond dropped out of A and T and worked as a counselor-coordinator at the Ceta program in Greensboro


Ezell Blair Jr. would go on to teach and be a counselor for the developmentally challenged and changed his name to Jibreel Khazan after joining Islam and is now an oral historian. 

Franklin Mc Carin would be a chemical engineer after graduating for 35 years.


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For a fun fact this week other than our new weekly ones, I looked into the origins of Black History Month. BHM was created by Carter G. Woodson, who was the son of two freed black slaves from the state of Virginia. It was originally started as Negro History Week in February as President Lincoln and Fredrick Douglas’ birthdays are Feb 12th and Feb 14th and just by chance maybe the 13th being right in the middle. The interesting thing is that the 13th is also the same Amendment number to the Constitution that abolished slavery in the United States. The first Negro History Week was announced in 1926 and would later become Black History Month until 1976.








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