Friday, November 30, 2007

latasha norman

Today Danny Bolden is doing the unthinkable. He?s preparing to bury the little girl he raised since she was just two years old.

Bolden is the stepfather of Jackson State University student Latasha Norman, who police believe was murdered by her ex-boyfriend Stanley Cole.

Cole, 24, remains in police custody. Details surrounding Latasha?s murder are not yet known.

Bolden described Latasha as a plant that he nurtured and watched grow for most of her 20-year life.

The junior accounting major was positive and ambitious. He always told her to get the most out of life and said she was strong.

?It just breaks our heart that Mr. Cole would do this to Latasha,? Bolden said.

Latasha had dated cole for more than two years, Bolden said. Cole had been over to Bolden?s home several times and had even shared a meal with the family.

Latasha was one of Bolden?s six daughters.

Bolden believes that Cole had been stalking Latasha for the past six months since she ended their relationship.

?He just couldn?t take rejection,? Bolden said.

The grieving father said he feels like Cole violated him by stealing Latasha from him.
Cole allegedly assaulted Latasha in a restaurant parking lot in October.

He was arrested yesterday while at a court appearance on a simple assault charge and later charged with Latasha?s murder.
?I didn?t know this abuse was going on,? Bolden said.

He added that he advises any young woman in an abusive relationship to get out of it.

?She (Latasha) thought she got out of it,? Bolden said. ?She moved on.?

A memorial for Latasha Norman is set for noon Monday in the Rose Embly McCoy Auditorium on the main campus of Jackson State University.

Latasha Norman's Boyfriend, Arrested and Charged for Murder, Leads Police to Her Body
Date: Friday, November 30, 2007
By: Sherrel Wheeler Stewart,

The body of a Jackson State University student missing since Nov. 13 has been found, and her boyfriend arrested and charged with murder, police said Thursday.

Latasha Norman, a 20-year-old accounting student from Greenville, Mississippi, was found dead in a wooded area on Brown Street near County Line Road in Jackson, said Sgt. Jeffrey Scott, spokesman for the Jackson Police Department.

"The agencies involved in this case worked very hard," Scott told "Regrettably, it came to this outcome."

Norman's boyfriend, 24-year-old Stanley Dwayne Cole, is in the Jackson jail, being held without bond in connection with the death, Scott said. He did not give a motive for the murder.

Cole was arrested Thursday morning when he appeared in a Pearl, Mississippi courtroom on charges of simple battery involving an earlier incident with Norman, authorities said.

Investigators questioned Cole several hours, Scott said. Based on information from the interviews, authorities were able to locate the body, he said.

Cole also was a student at Jackson State, according to Anthony Dean, university spokesman.

Imagine being one of Latasha Norman's loved ones. Imagine the fear and worry of not knowing where she is, what's happened to her and if you'll ever see your daughter or sister or cousin again. Norman, a junior at Mississippi's Jackson State University, has been missing since Nov. 13.

Rebkah Howard doesn't have to imagine it. Tamika Huston, her 24-year-old niece, went missing in 2004 from Spartanburg, S.C. One year later, a man that Huston had been dating confessed to her murder and took police to her body.

Howard remembers well the fear, worry and sheer agony of trying to find out what happened to her niece. She also recalls the frustration of trying to get media coverage of Huston's disappearance.


Howard said then and still says now that the media were slow to report about her niece's disappearance because she was black. She believes the same thing is happening with Norman's case.

"Latasha Norman's name is not a household name by any stretch of the imagination," Howard told me. "Yet, we're getting hourly updates about Stacy Peterson."

Peterson is the young white woman from Bolingbrook, Ill., who has been missing since Oct. 29. Her husband, Drew, a former Bolingbrook police officer, is a suspect.

Putting a racial context on these cases will make some of you bristle. But before you get too outraged, put "Stacy Peterson" in the Google search engine. You'll get more than 3,000 possible news stories. Google "Latasha Norman" and only 70 possible news stories pop up.

Still not convinced? Malcolm McMillin, Jackson's police chief, is. And he's white.

"As far as the interest by the national media in the story, I think race probably had an impact," McMillin told The Associated Press. "We're looking for the media to give this case as much exposure as it can so that we can develop some leads."

Let's be clear: Racial hatred isn't what we're talking about here. Indifference is today's culprit. When crime befalls a young white woman, it's considered an anomaly. When a young black woman is a victim, it's considered the norm - and consequently, not news.


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