Three years ago, Atlanta teen Kendrick Johnson was found dead rolled up in a gymnastics mat. His friends and family are convinced it was a murder, and yet the Department of Justice has just closed the case without any charges. What’s the deal?
First, let’s rewind.
On January 10, 2013 the 17-year-old was found in Southern Georgia upside down in an upright mat. Local authorities called it a “freak accident” and determined that Kendrick had fallen headfirst into the already rolled up mat, allegedly reaching for a lost shoe.
But things didn’t quite sit right with Kendrick’s family and by October of that year, they exhumed his body for a second autopsy where it was discovered that numerous of his organs were missing and his body had been stuffed with newspaper.
With the help of a lawyer, the Johnson family was able to convince authorities to reopen the case. But now, 2 1/2 years later, the Department of Justice has officially closed the case and released the following statement,
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. Accordingly, the investigation into this incident has been closed without the filing of federal criminal charges.
But friends, family, and followers of the case are not satisfied with the government’s conclusions, to say the least.
While the DOJ claims insufficient evidence, many point to the missing organs, suspicious lack of camera footage of the accident (despite there being 4 security cameras in the school gym where Kendrick was found), the second autopsy report that pointed to non-accidental causes of death, and the gruesome images of his exhumed body (which you view on the Facebook page dedicated in his honor), as evidence to the contrary.
So why is the DOJ closing this case when there seems like so much evidence leading to foul play?
We have a feeling this won’t be the last we’ll hear about Kendrick and his untimely death. And we sincerely hope that the Johnson family will be given the peace they so badly deserve.