A prosecutor has given up attempts to have one of the Louisiana teenagers at the center of a civil-rights furor tried as an adult, Reuters reports. Mychal Bell, 17, was convicted in June of battery in the beating of a white classmate, but an appeals court overturned the verdict on grounds that Bell couldn't be tried as an adult.
A spokewoman for civil-rights activist Al Sharpton, who led recent protests in Jena, La., said today's move could hasten Bell's release. Bell was among six black students who beat a white classmate last year. The group was first tried with attempted murder, but the charges were reduced amid accusations that the charges were excessive racially motivated.