The Murder of Skylar Neese & Dr. Ossian Sweet

Apr 15, 11:00 AM
This week, Brandi makes up for Kristin’s April Fool’s Day prank by *actually* covering the murder of Skylar Neese. 

It was the summer of 2012, and Dave Neese was supposed to have lunch with his 16-year-old daughter, Skylar. But Skylar wasn’t anywhere to be found. Dave was annoyed. It wasn’t like Skylar to be so irresponsible. He called her, but got no answer. Hours passed. Skylar missed her shift at Wendy’s. Her co-workers were concerned. Skylar always showed up for work. At that point, Dave and Mary Neese called the police.

Then Kristin tells the story of Dr. Ossian Sweet. Brandi tried to tell this story for our Black History Month episode, but threw in the towel. (In case you couldn’t tell, this episode is a rough one!) In 1925, Dr. Ossian Sweet and his wife Gladys Sweet were ready to buy their first home. As a black couple, they faced incredible obstacles. Restrictive covenants barred people of color from buying houses in white neighborhoods. That spring and summer, mobs of white people harassed black families who moved into white neighborhoods. Despite their fears, the Sweets bought a house at 2905 Garland St, Detroit, Michigan, and prepared to defend their property.

And now for a note about our process. For each episode, Kristin reads a bunch of articles, then spits them back out in her very limited vocabulary. Brandi copies and pastes from the best sources on the web. And sometimes Wikipedia. (No shade, Wikipedia. We love you.) We owe a huge debt of gratitude to the real experts who covered these cases.

In this episode, Kristin pulled from:
“The Sweet Trials” famous-trials.com
“Ossian Sweet” wikipedia
“Sweet Trials: 1925-26” encyclopedia.com
The book, “We Return Fighting: The Civil Rights Movement in the Jazz Age” by Mark Robert Schneider
“Dr. Alexander Turner” by Mariel Watkins for the Black Bottom Archives

In this episode, Brandi pulled from:
“Something Wicked” episode Dateline
“16-Year-Old Skylar Neese Was Stabbed To Death By Her Two Best Friends Because They Didn’t Like Her Anymore” by William DeLong, AllThatsInteresting.com
“From Best Friends to Killers: Teens Murder Friend Because They 'Didn't Like Her’” by Gail Deutsch and Alexa Valiente, ABC News
“Murder of Skylar Neese” wikipedia.org