I have put most of the media aside where this stuff is concerned because, well, it’s media… but this particular article struck a chord and my main question (it may be a compound question) is why on Earth is this still going on? Now, with all the talk, threats, protests, constant media coverage, undermining of police forces everywhere… why is this sort of thing still going on?
Obviously the kid did not climb up to the top of a gym mat and then dive in to get a shoe… not even an Air Jordan I’m sure… This kid was 17 years old! 17… Toddlers crawl into things and get stuck okay.. get the picture? Only four months spent on an investigation, 4 motion activated surveillance cameras pick up nothing.. not even a 17 year old male high school student in a squeaky ass gym, scaling at least a 6 ft gym mat that was casually leaned up against the wall. That did not fall over when the boy got stuck down in there… no struggle at all huh? Surprising the mat did not just fall over and Mr. Johnson would have just crawled out of the other side… Nothing to set off those 4 motion detecting surveillance cameras that were in the gym… Nothing at all. Just the kid strolling across the gym.. then, wait, some other guys.. then what? the door? The Georgia PD doesn’t say.
Please check this out and see what you think about it… it worries me that this is still going on. That these public institutions still do not think that they are being watched by every public eye, and if they do, that is even worse.. it means they may just not care…
DOJ will not file charges in 2013 death of 17-year-old Kendrick Johnson, whose body was found in a rolled-up gym mat
- Johnson’s body was found at Lowndes High School in January 11, 2013
- Investigators concluded the teen died while reaching for a shoe inside mat
- Medical examiner ruled he asphyxiated after getting stuck upside down
- But his parents insisted someone must have killed 17-year-old
- Four surveillance cameras inside gym did not capture what happened and county coroner was not called until six hours after Johnson was found
- DOJ ruled the case was closed on Monday with no criminal charges filed
Federal criminal charges will not be filed in the mysterious death of a teenager who was found dead inside a rolled-up gym mat at a Georgia high school, the Department of Justice announced Monday.
Local and state authorities ruled Kendrick Johnson’s January 2013 death was caused after the 17-year-old got stuck upside down in the middle of a rolled up mat and was unable to breathe.
Johnson’s parents have denied that his death was a freak accident and pushed to reopen the investigation insisting someone must have killed their son.
The DOJ closed the case Monday, announcing there was not enough evidence to file charges.
After extensive investigation into this tragic event, federal investigators determined that there is insufficient evidence to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that someone or some group of people willfully violated Kendrick Johnson’s civil rights or committed any other prosecutable federal crime,’ the Justice Department said in a statement Monday.
‘Accordingly, the investigation into this incident has been closed without the filing of federal criminal charges.’
Classmates at Lowndes High School in Valdosta, Georgia, found his body on January 11, 2013, inside one of the rolled-up gym mats propped upright against a wall next to the gymnasium bleachers.
Sheriff’s investigators for Lowndes County closed the case four months after Johnson turned up dead.
They concluded he died in a freak accident while reaching for a gym shoe inside one of the mats.
A state medical examiner ruled the cause of death was ‘positional asphyxia,’ meaning the teenager got stuck upside down in a position that left him unable to breathe.
Johnson’s parents and their supporters refused to let the case be put to rest.
They got a judge’s order to exhume the body last summer so a second autopsy could be performed.
The private pathologist hired by Johnson’s family reported finding hemorrhaging beneath the skin of Kendrick’s jaw and neck and concluded he suffered a fatal blow near his carotid artery that appeared to be ‘non-accidental’.
Sheriff’s detectives who investigated the death insisted they found nothing to suggest foul play. But the 522-page case file revealed enough stumbles and loose ends to fuel conspiracy theories.
Though Lowndes High School has dozens of surveillance camera monitoring its doors and hallways, including four cameras in the gym where Johnson was found dead, none of them recorded the events leading to his death.
Investigators suspect the gym mats were too far away to trigger any of the motion-activated cameras, which filmed Johnson strolling into the gym but nothing else.
Attorneys for Johnson’s parents suggested footage released to the family and the media may have been altered.
The case file notes that the county coroner wasn’t called to the scene until six hours after Johnson’s body was found. Under Georgia law he should have been notified immediately.
The coroner criticized sheriff’s investigators for the delay, but agreed with their conclusion that Johnson’s death was accidental.
The strange circumstances of Johnson’s death attracted attention far beyond his hometown of Valdosta near the Georgia-Florida state line.
Rallies and marches calling for answers drew hundreds, while thousands followed social media sites dedicated to the case.
The Florida lawyer who represented Trayvon Martin’s family worked to help ensure Johnson’s death wasn’t forgotten.
‘The Department of Justice, in particular the lawyers and investigators who have worked tirelessly on this investigation, express their most sincere condolences to Kendrick Johnson’s parents, family, and friends,’ Acting United States Attorney Carole Rendon said in a statement Monday.
‘We regret that we were unable to provide them with more definitive answers about Kendrick’s tragic death.’