Black News


By: Moses Kamuiru

It has taken more than sixty years for the lie that led to Emmett Till’s lynching to be brought to light. Currently, Till’s family is calling for the reopening of his case. In 1955, Till then 14 years old, was abducted by two white men after Carolyn Donham, then 21, accused him of making sexual advances at her. J.W. Milam who was Dunham’s first husband and his half-brother Roy Bryant shot and mutilated Till’s body. He was then found weighted down in the Tallahatchie River with a cotton gin fan.

Bryant and Milam stood trial for Till’s murder. At the trial, Donham alleged that Till grabbed her hand and made sexual advances. The two suspects were later acquitted by an all-male, all-white jury. The duo admitted to murdering Till just months later in a Look Magazine’s paid interview.

In January, “The Blood of Emmett Till” was published revealing that Donham had committed perjury. In 2008 Donham admitted that she had lied about till ever making sexual advances and grabbing her in an interview by Timothy B. Tyson. “Nothing that boy did could ever justify what happened to him,” she told Tyson.

Wheeler Parker, Till’s cousin, was with him when they encountered Donham in 1955. Parker while talking to the AP said that Till did “for sure” whistle at the 21-year-old but never threatened or grabbed her. Another of Till’s cousin Deborah Watts stated that she believes that new information could be found if the case is reopened. “We know that she has admitted that she lied, and we know that is part of the reason Emmett is no longer with us,” Watts told the AP. “If there is any chance to reopen the case, I hope they will take this opportunity to do it now.”

Moses Wright, Till’s great uncle, said that he saw two men hold the 14-year-old at gunpoint and took him inside a parked to a third person. The now deceased Milam and Bryant were the only duo charged for the murder. Watts said that identifying the third person would be made possible by reopening the investigation.

Read more of the original story on The Huffington Post here.

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