Valdosta Daily Times

Kendrick Johnson

December 11, 2013

State capitol rally today for new KJ probe

ATLANTA — A three-hour rally for a new investigation into the disputed death of Lowndes High student Kendrick Johnson 11 months ago is planned today on the front steps of the Georgia Capitol building.

Organizers of the “Who Killed KJ” gathering said it will feature remarks by civil rights activists Al Sharpton, Joseph Lowery and Martin Luther King III, eldest son of the late Martin Luther King Jr.

Rickey Smiley, an Atlanta-based television host, actor and comedian, is also scheduled to speak at the 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. rally on behalf of the Johnson family, which contends their son was a victim of foul play and did not die accidentally.

Kendrick Johnson, 17, was found dead last Jan. 11, in an upright, rolled up mat in the high school’s old gymnasium.

Sheriff’s investigators and an autopsy by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation ruled his death was due to “positional asphyxia” from his body being upside down for an extended time after he became trapped in the mat while trying to retrieve a gym shoe.

A second autopsy six months after his death by a private pathologist hired by the Johnson family determined he was the victim of blunt force trauma to the neck.

Concern over the details of the youth’s death resulted in U.S. Attorney Michael Moore and the Federal Bureau of Investigation announcing they would review the evidence in the case and try to determine if Johnson’s death was accidental or due to criminal activity.

The Johnson family has been in Atlanta since Sunday and spoke to the press after church services for their son at the historic Ebenezer Baptist Church. Jacquelyn Johnson, Kendrick’s mother, said she was not there to make accusations but to call for an investigation into her son’s mysterious death.

“I’m asking everybody to stand with us as we fight this fight to get the truth for my son,” she said.

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Kendrick Johnson
  • KJ’s parents claim racial bullying in lawsuit

    The parents of Kendrick Johnson have sued the Lowndes County School System, claiming officials neglected to protect their son from racial harassment and bullying that they said led to his death.

    May 15, 2014

  • Anonymous email in KJ case based on rumor, says author

    The teenage girl who authored an anonymous email claiming someone had confessed to murdering Kendrick Johnson says it was strictly a rumor that she felt conscience-bound to share with the sheriff’s office.

    March 27, 2014

  • keyboard.jpg Authorities: Confession in KJ case not credible

    An anonymous email claiming a former classmate of Kendrick Johnson had confessed to killing him was investigated and determined not to be credible, the Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office said Thursday.

    March 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • social.jpg Mom says sons harassed, threatened in KJ case

    Karen Bell has had it with the rumor-mongering about her family’s connection to the death of Kendrick Johnson on social networking sites like YouTube,  Twitter and Facebook.

    February 9, 2014 1 Photo

  • Johnsons file civil suit against funeral home

    Kendrick Johnson’s parents have filed a civil lawsuit against the Harrington Funeral Home, claiming it negligently handled their son’s remains and deliberately withheld information about the condition of his body.

    February 6, 2014

  • 140121-Floyd_Rose001.jpg No response to KJ reward

    A local civil rights leader returned reward money to its donor Tuesday after it failed to yield any significant information pertaining to the death of Kendrick Johnson.

    January 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • State capitol rally today for new KJ probe

    A three-hour rally for a new investigation into the disputed death of Lowndes High student Kendrick Johnson 11 months ago is planned today on the front steps of the Georgia Capitol building.

    December 11, 2013

  • Kendrick_Johnson.jpg Where was Kendrick?

    About this series
    This is the third of four stories by the Valdosta Daily Times reviewing the official police file on the investigation into the death of Kendrick Johnson. Today’s report is about the confusion surrounding Kendrick’s whereabouts the day before his body was found, explains police handling of a report that a person was attacked and falsely accused of killing Kendrick, and tells about the dissatisfaction of Lowndes County Coroner Bill Watson with how authorities handled the immediate investigation.

    November 23, 2013 1 Photo 2 Stories

  • kendrick-johnson.jpg Finding Kendrick

    The Times continues its in-depth look at the investigative case file into the January death of Kendrick Johnson at Lowndes High School.

    November 22, 2013 1 Photo

  • kendrick-johnson.jpg Kendrick’s Final Walk

    A review of Lowndes High School video footage shows more than the moments Kendrick Johnson entered the old gymnasium where his body was discovered Jan. 11 in a rolled wrestling mat.

    November 21, 2013 1 Photo

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