I’ve been waiting for someone affiliated with law enforcement to say Kendrick Johnson’s death was suspicious.

It’s about time.

Johnson, 17, was found dead in a rolled-up gym mat on January 11 at Lowndes High School in Valdosta, Georgia. His face was bloated with filled with blood.

State medical examiners said Johnson suffocated but offered no explanation for how Johnson ended up smothered and bloody in a wrestling mat.

There were no details, no witnesses, no clues. Police say the case is closed. It’s been ruled an accidental death.

But now, a 15-minute video and nearly 700 photos taken by sheriff’s investigators in Lowndes County that were obtained by CNN, may tell a different story of how Johnson died.

“I don’t believe this was an accident. I think this young man met with foul play,” Harold Copus, a former FBI agent now an Atlanta private investigator, told CNN.

It’s unconscionable that after nine months police closed the case during a questionable investigation. At best, it’s sloppy investigative work. At worse, could it be a cover-up?

CNN reported that a pair of orange-and-black gym shoes found a few yards from Johnson’s body had a substance that looked like blood on them, but investigators told CNN the stains weren’t blood — and so the shoes were not collected as potential evidence.

So who owned the gym shoes? The shoes could be a critical clue in the investigation.

Copus said he can’t explain how investigators handled items found around the gym.

“If you’re running a crime scene, then you’re going to say ‘That’s potential evidence. Obviously, we’re going to check this out and find out who does it belong to,’ ” he told CNN.

Adding to the family’s agony is another devastating development:  Kendrick’s organs were removed during an autopsy, but his body and skull were stuffed with newspaper before burial.

“We have been let down again,” Kenneth Johnson, Kendrick’s father, told CNN. “When we buried Kendrick, we thought we were burying Kendrick, not half of Kendrick.”

Two agencies handled Kendrick Johnson’s body after his death — the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, which conducted the first autopsy in January; and the Harrington Funeral Home in Valdosta.

But nobody is taking responsibility for Kendrick’s missing organs.

“It’s unbearable, just about,” Jacquelyn Johnson, Kendrick’s mother, told CNN, adding that stuffing her son’s body with old newspapers was “like he was a garbage can.”

Meanwhile, Lowndes High School administration official have refused to release video of Johnson’s last moments at the school. CNN reported that no students, teachers or administrators noticed that Johnson was missing from his classes until his father worried that he did not return home after school.

The Georgia county coroner, Bill Watson, admitted that the county’s sheriff’s department did not notify him about Johnson’s death on January 11. It is unclear how long it took for the sheriff’s department to notify Watson, or if any evidence was removed or tampered with.

Kenneth Johnson, said the investigation is shady.

“They know something happened in that gym, and they don’t want it to come out,” he said.

What happened to Kendrick Johnson? Will we ever know? Even though police investigators quickly closed the case, I still believe somebody knows something – and somebody saw something.

There are still more questions than answers.

“Someone murdered him,” Johnson said. “They should be in jail.”

This so-called investigation is a travesty. The Johnson family needs closure — but they also deserve to know the truth.

Also On Black America Web:

55 thoughts on “COMMENTARY: New Evidence in Kendrick Johnson’s Death? Let’s Get to the Truth. Was It Murder?

  1. billy blanks on said:

    Can’t publish a story anywhere without hundreds maybe even thousands if people saying their useless racist comments I feel like it was some injustice did but why bring down blacks or whites for this cause it looked liked some blacks and whites worked together and got away with murder. Most of you have insecurities and let it be known over the internet sorry to say but not all blacks are poor or want your girlfriend and not all whites are shady people you people act like children I feel bad If you all have any because you could ruin them with your beliefs like you did your own life.

  2. It’s ironic that white folks are always calling black folks lazy, when in fact for centuries slave owners force blacks to work sun up to sun down in the fields, cleaning their homes, washing their clothes, cooking their meals, taking care of their children, doing all the things they didn’t want to do, while they sat back with their feet up, and to add insult to injury, while their wives were out of the house, these bastards were screwing their female slaves, I know it was the best sex they every had. Now, blacks are sitting back with their feet up, waiting patiently every month for that government check, you white folks are working for hundreds of thousands of welfare recipients, I know it must kill you knowing that you have to work every single day for people that you absolutely despise, my how the tables have turned. BTW, don’t forget to set your alarm clocks, we wouldn’t want you to be late for WORK!

  3. adrian on said:

    When will blacks in this country wake up, this white race hate us, stop thinking that we will get justice in this F-up country; we must standup and protect our own. Get off your knees praying to this fictional character that you call Jesus HE WON’T AND HAVEN’T DONE ANYTHING FOR THE BLACK RACE. Stop praying for forgiveness for these white devils that have done so much evil to us. BLACK PEOPLE WAKE THE F UP!!!!

    • Adrian, by the way, I’d tell that to anyone with such an insane, ignorant, racist attitude, white, brown, black, Asian, Hispanic, whatever. This is America you racist fool. You’re spoiled. You expect things that most people everywhere else have to work for. Racism is everywhere, and some of the worst racists are black, like you. In Africa they just butcher each other in tribal wars and street warfare where Muslims and Christians slaughter each other.

  4. I live in Valdosta Georgia.There is 2 stories going around at school. A young man (I will not say the name) got mad because Kendrick was caught flirting with the guys girlfriend and he got mad and went to go jump him, didnt mean to kill him but did. It was the mayor’s song (so people say). Another story is that KJ stole the SAME boy’s shoes and the other guy wanted them back and ONCE AGAIN go to jump him but also didnt mean to kill him and rap him up in mats. The evidence was all cleaned up before the police were even called. So the school and the mayor HAVE to do something with it. So the mayor’s kid wouldnt get in trouble, its the system thats messing us up. They just want to keep a good rep. What I dont understand is why they are just now on the news its been almost 10 months. The justice system is TERRIBLE not just in Valdosta but all over the country. Its all in the system if you know somebody that knows somebody you can do whatever you want. We NEED justice in the country and we need it before it goes any further. You can tell just by the pictures that he was beaten. This is such a stupid case. Where is the video? This was DURING school. THE SHERIFF AND MAYOR IS PART OF THIS!

  5. HAVING LIVED IN vALDOSTA RECENTLY, I CAN TELL YOU THAT THIS COVER-UP MENTALITY IS NOT NEW. LOOK UP THE CASSOTA CASE IN THE 90’S; WHERE A POLICEMAN’S WIFE WAS MURDERED. HER HUSBAND, A VALDOSTA POLICEMAN , WAS THE PRIME SUSPECT. HOWEVER, THE APARTMENT WAS CLEANED UP; AND SHE WAS PLACED IN THE BATHTUB. THE POLICE DEPARMENT WAS WIDELY KNOWN TO HAVE COVERED UP THIS MURDER; TO HELP THEIR COLLEGUE. THE CASSOTA’S WERE GOING THROUGH A BITTER DIVORCE; AND CHILD CUSTODY CASE. NEEDLESS TO SAY, HE GOT AWAY WITH IT. TILL TODAY, HE WALKS AROUND LIKE A MODEL CITIZEN. HIS NEW WIFE AND CHILDREN ATTEND SCHOOL AND CHURCH WITH MY FAMILY.

  6. Daniel Asamota on said:

    We all need to pray to God that not only is this murderer or murderers flushed out, but that the system that perpetuates this injustice which seems to be the whole sherriff’s dept down to the coroner who sold this boy’s organs without the consent of his parents! We need to pray that God destroy the whole system down there and remove those from office who obviously don’t believe in justice, truth, and human rights! This is the only way this won’t happen again is if the system that makes it possible for evil people (racists) to do these sort of things and still have protection under the so-called ‘law’.

  7. BTW, Zippy, there are hundred of thousands of unsolved crimes in this country, so your so-called statistics that you pulled off the internet, and you seem to be so pride of, is nothing but junk science, that you white folks use to make yourselves feel superior to others. BTW, you are pathetic, and this will be my final communication with you.

  8. Zippy, you are proving my point, that you white folks, have created in your own warp minds this fantasy world, you people refuse to see the world as it really is. First of all, statistics by race wasn’t gathered until the 1980’s, and who do you think collected the information, you guess it, your white counterparts? Second of all, slavery started in the 1400’s when your savage ancestors were beating, raping, burning, and lynching innocent men, women, and children, so how on earth in that narrow minded brain of yours, can you possibly think that those statistics that you pulled off the internet is accurate? Listen, Zippy, if it makes you feel important to think that you are better than every other race on the planet, then keep dreaming.

  9. donnacabel2 on said:

    I must give my thanks to SARAH MOORE, who posted here last week comment about system she uses to earn online… I’ve got my FIRST check total of $550, pretty cool.. I am so exicted, this is the first time I actually earned something. I am going to work even harder new and I can’t wait for next week payment. You can try it for yourself. Bow6com

  10. Zippy, the reason why, it appears that blacks commit more crimes than whites, as much as it kills me to say this, you people are smart, you have figured out a way, how to steal, and murder, and get away with it for years. Bernie Madoff, started stealing folks hard earn money back in the 1970’s, and didn’t get caught until 2008, that’s almost 3 DECADES!

  11. BTW, Zippy, since you like statistics so much, why don’t you look up how many whites are on welfare, as oppose to blacks, narrow minded, narcissitic people like yourself, will be shocked to know, that there are more white folks on welfare, and always have been.

  12. Zippy, Let me tell you the difference between a black criminal, and a white criminal, first of all, they’re both idiots, that being said, when a black person steals, they go hold up a convenience store, and maybe get fifty bucks, chump change, but when you white folks steal, you guys do it big, you go for the big bucks, I’m talking about MILLIONS, you people are experts at embezzling, and ponzi schemes, I’m sure you’re familiar with Bernie Maddoff, and Martha Stewart. When a black person kills, they just do a drive by, but when you white folks kill, look out, because you guys really do your homework, you take the time to plan and plot your murder, search the internet, looking up things like “how to poison some one with cyanide, “how to get rid of a body” all the good that do you, because 9 times out of 10 you end going to prison anyway. When a black person commits a crime, they’re called a thug, but when you white folks commits a crime, white society has given you, names like blue collar criminal, or white collar criminal, how cute.

  13. Listen, Zippy, if you have any thing to say to me, you can say it out in the open, don’t send garbage to my personal email account, when I saw your name I immediately deleted your message, I didn’t even bother to read it. Let me tell you something, I saw a movie years ago called The boy in the bubble, that movie reminds me, how you white folks live, in a bubble, you honestly think that you can go off from the rest of society, and create your own lily white community, desperately trying to run from the big bad wolf, well, you can run, but you can’t hide, any time some horrendous crime like murder or rape occur in your fictional communities, you people make this stupid comment like “I just can’t believe something like that would ever happen here” why? because you’re so people? please get over yourselves, and deal with reality.

  14. RENO2AC on said:

    Do blacks murder more whites, or are they convicted more? Do whites murder less than blacks, or are they just convicted less often?

  15. White folks are a mess. I am sick, and tired of you, spewing you filthy lies. This statement about black on black crime is a joke, first of all, blacks don’t kill one another, no more that you white folks kill each other. White folks, have created this make believe, fantasy world in your own sick minds, that you are better than every one else, you, have made yourselves judge, and juror over the entire population, walking around with your noses stuck up in the air, walking around like you SHIT don’t stink, I guess in order for you people to make it through each, and every day, you have to believe that you are superior. You, think you kids are so perfect, you, think your neighborhoods are so perfect, well, may I remind you, that John Lennon, and Versace, weren’t murdered in the hood, they were gunned down in front of their own homes. I know, perfectly well, what goes on in your perfect neighborhoods, meth labs, wife swapping, spouses plotting to kill one another just to collect the insurance money, and of course, white kids, never steal, never get suspended from school, never cheat, never lie, never kill, and God forbid, they never ever do drugs, they’re just perfect little angels. You, white folks need to come down to planet earth, there is only one God, and you are not it. Your broke asses shop at the same store I shop at WALMART!

    • Cristren, crime statistics don’t lie. The facts show that blacks murder over twice as many whites as whites murder blacks. The facts (and anyone with eyes and a brain) know that blacks commit crimes at a far greater rate than whites, Asians, or Hispanics. That stats below were compiled by H0lder’s Justice Dept. Blacks move into white neighborhoods to flee the crime, drugs, and thugs that you won’t snitch on. You don’t have to be rich to keep your house and streets clean, be a good parent, work hard, be accountable and responsible for yourself, and not tolerate crime, hood rats, and thuggery. You can rant and rave all you want, but it doesn’t change the facts:

      White Murder Victims: 3,172 (2,630 murdered by white / 448 murdered by black)
      Black Murder Victims: 2,695 (193 murdered by white / 2,447 murdered by black)

      http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/crime-in-the-u.s/2011/crime-in-the-u.s.-2011/tables/expanded-homicide-data-table-6

      Before you start blaming and raving, clean up your own house.

      • RENO2AC on said:

        For the record, I’m not sure what world that live in, but what you are describing transcends race. I work in a school district, and I live in a predominately white upper,middle class neighborhood. You know who I see at the neighborhood Wal-mart in their pajamas, with their dirty face kids, bellies hanging to the ground, dirty feet in flip flops, with their EBT cards? Do you know? WHITE PEOPLE!! OMG!!! Who would have thought it? White people on welfare? White people living in the hoods with dirty houses, dirty diapers on the floor, no teeth….Really. Stats are easily manipulated, and you can add a variety of variables. I would like to see how many whites are CHARGED with crimes and not convicted as oppsed to how many blacks are charged and convicted. Your rhetoric is disgusting, sad, and ignorant.

      • Love how you cherry picked the date to try and prove a point. Examine ALL violent crimes then tell me what you come up with.

  16. Black hoods are hellholes, blacks murder over twice as many whites every year as whites murder blacks, even though blacks are only 12.5% of the country. Blacks commit the majority of violent crime, black hoods are garbage strewn, drug slinging welfare hells of feral fatherless children. Yet, blacks are fixated on finding a way to blame whites for something, like this case. Blacks ignore the thousands of blacks killed by blacks in the hood, invoke the “no snitch rule” yet are insanely fixated on something like this, trying to find a way to blame “racism” and white people for something, anything, so as to somehow justify the rampant welfare, criminality, bastardy, and failures in black communities. As long as you rely upon Democrats for handouts, EBT cards, and race hustle excuses, black America is going nowhere. Seen the news media playing the case below everyday? Where are the white Jessies and Als bombing the media everyday with this disgusting racist torture murder? Shame shame.

  17. The question is who murdered KJ, and why? This beautiful boy was beaten beyond recognition. Years ago when I sent my two daughters to school, I had peace of mind thinking, they were in the hands of caring adults, little did I know, I was sending my children into a lions den. These school officials are horrible, they care more about preserving their schools reputation, rather than the safety, and well being of their students, this is scary considering our children are in their care any where from 6 to 7 hours a day. These last few years, we have seen schools cover up child molestation, rape, and now MURDER! I pray that the person or persons responsible for KJ death, and every person involved with this cover up is prosecuted.

    • Wow! It’s funny you said that (Funny may not be a good choice of word). My GOD-mother and I was discussing this case and she said, “I wonder if it had something to do with him dating a white girl”? I won’t be surprised. Sad to say, though.

  18. SUE the Shit out of everyone, starting with the school and the police department. The young man was murdered and it looks like he suffered a great deal. Now his family is suffering and finding out little by little the shady shit that going on. To bury somebody loved one without telling them the actual condition of the body is disgusting. Sue them too. My heart goes out to this family and their suffering. I will certainly keep you in my prayers.

  19. Lakeysha Ayers on said:

    why the hell would they ask the dumb ass question was he murdered? DUH yes he was murdered and they need to do more to find out what happened cause somebody know. This world is sick and we going down for shit like this. The school is full of assholes this is sickening and you wonder why motherfuckers come back killing everyone what the fuck is going on yoooooo I am telling you this shit is insane fuck the police they aint worth shit I am pissed something got to give this is madness

    • Outraged Sista on said:

      You said everything I wanted too say. This is a damn shame and thought of this beautiful young person having been murdered by racist at a school full of nothing but prejudice kkkrackers makes my blood boil!! What the f*ck is wrong with sick kkkrackas. I wish the Black Panthers days were still in existence because those kkkrackas would pay for the shit they doing to innocent people. They are so threatened by our success and beauty, that is at the root of their evil…always has been!!

  20. KEVIN HURST on said:

    THERE IS CLEARLY FOUL PLAY HERE AND IF THIS HAS REACHED THE CHIEF OF POLICE AND THE MAYOR AND YOU HAVE NOT HAD A PUSH FOR JUSTICE , THEN THERE SHOULD BE A FORMAL INQUIRY DONE TO FIND ANSWERS THIS IS BLATANTLY ABSURD , YOU MAY HAVE TO GO OVER THERE HEADS TO THE JUSTICE DEPARTMENT TO GET THE SATISFACTION YOU DESERVE … THE TAX DOLLAR SURE DOES NOT SEEM TO PAY FOR MUCH ANYMORE EXCEPT GOVERNMENT WAGES .

  21. Daniel Asamota on said:

    It’s obvious that law enforcment there was involved in his death. Why the cover-up if not? Then for them to remove his organs and obviously sell them to the highest bidder? The coroners office ought to be indicted too! There’s obviously some serious racist shit going on in that town and an outside investigation is in order! And who needs to be investigated first is the sheriff’s department because I’ll bet there we’ll find our murderer!

  22. Sarena Watkins on said:

    Heartbreaking..sad..anger producing story! I currently live in Georgia & am just now hearing about this tragic incident. I wouldn’t EVER want this to happen to one of my sons or daughters. Valdosta OWES this family–and THAT SCHOOL KNOWS SOMETHING. Speculating, as a mother of a now college athlete, this could be a “jealous classmates” gang related happening. Sad.

  23. “ONLY N RACIST KKK LAND WERE U HEAR BOUT CRAZY SHYT LIKE THIS.” DA KKK WILL STICK 2GETHA NO MATTER WUT!!! SO GUD LUC ON FINDN HIS KILLA OR KILLERZ. N NEVA TRUST DA POPOZ. BLAC PPL #1 ENEMY!!! U CUDNT PAY ME DA LIVE, VISIT, OR STAY N KKK HEARTLAND. INSTAND OF A ROPE, HE/THEY USED A DAMN GYM MAT, WOW!!! ONLY N FUCD UP WHITE AMERICA. I WILL PRAY 4 KENDRICK FAM.

    • Sexy Leroy on said:

      It was an all black school asshoIe! Another nigga did this! If you don’t like America so much then move away. Try Africa, then you can see how savage we REALLY can be!! Hint: take a machete!!

      • punkin on said:

        Sexy leroy lowndes is a mostly white school there are other races! Valdosta high is mostly blacks where Kendricks death did not take place get ur facts! Justice needs to be served soon bc so much is going on in valdosta ga right now

  24. This is such a sad incident. It is obvious that there was foul play. This child’s face almost looks like Emmitt Till’s face. I pray that JUSTICE prevails. We should be OUTRAGED as human beings. The officials in that state has to do something. As an educator, I know that school is suppose to be a safe place. Somebody dropped the responsibility. It’s time to WAKE-UP! We cannot permit this to go unnoticed. Then someone will wonder about the angry blackman? dud? I will be praying for the family. No parent should have to endure this.

  25. There’s obviously a killer on the loose! Someone had to roll this young man up in the mats, because he surely couldn’t have rolled himself up! This is just sad, and I pray that who ever did this will never have a peaceful day! However, I do pray that the family will find peace in the midst of this madness!

  26. The school refuses to release the video. I thought the FBI had the power to MAKE them provide the video. That right there is some shady crap. Seems to me someone from the school doesn’t want the truth to be revealed. If the case has been reopened then the police can obtain that video through a warrant if necessary.

  27. What the heck! on said:

    Are you kidding me. Clearly there is a cover up and its straight out of a movie but this is real life and whom ever is apart of this cover up shall be prrosecuted to the full extent of the law! Starting with the school officials chief and coroners office how could they disregard a childs life and organs like this! The devils a lie and what has happened in the dark will come to light sooner or later! Praying for peace and justice for this family the deceased and their community!

      • Free740 on said:

        Riot, serioulsy? That would simply result in more violence, death and racila divide. I agree something is being covered up, big time! We don’t know but to ASSume he was murdered by white people, black people, yellow people, whatever is ridiculous – NO ONE KNOWS! Also as with every other tragic story like this DO NOT TRUST MAINSTREAM NEWS SOURCES.

  28. Caramelcutie on said:

    THIS WHOLE STORY IS A COVER-UP!!!! THIS YOUNG MAN WAS MURDERED AT SCHOOL AND NO ONE SEEN OR HEARD ANYTHING. ALL THOSE WHO HAVE AUTHORITY IN THIS MATTER SHOULD BE FIRED AND SUED! NOTHING ABOUT THIS SITUATION IS GOOD. THE PARENTS ARE TRULY LIVING A NIGHTMARE.

    • Jiggy5 on said:

      Sounds very much like another Jordan sneaker robbery gone bad. A shame this young man died, but if we don’t teach our youth the value of life over material possessions, we will continue to endure black on black violence.

      • I’M SORRY BUT DID I MISS THE PART ABOUT THE KILLER(S) BEING BLACK? OR WAS IT THE PART ABOUT HIS SHOES MISSING? DO YOU HAVE THE FULL STORY OR ARE YOU JUST “ASSUMING” THAT’S WHAT HAPPENED? EITHER POST THE “FACTS” OR KEEP YOUR TRAP SHUT!

  29. cassandra on said:

    We have a lot of shocking cover-ups with our police departments, sometimes ‘you don’t know who to trust..” My deepest condolences go out to the family of this young victim , and i hope that we can find his killer(s), just like were looking for justice in the Trayvon Martin case.Its time for mothers and fathers of our children to take stand for our own justice and let it rise above the law of the lands..’

  30. Vee Bowman on said:

    I agree, if that is what they call police work they all need to be fired. Obviously they don’t how to do police work or how to investigate a crime scene. There racism clouds their judgment and that’s not going to help anybody.

  31. Dariecka on said:

    Unfortunately if this were a young white male, it would have made national headlines immediately. I agree with Yolanda we as a people need to bring attention to this in hopes of bringing closure to the parents, friends and family. There is clearly something wrong within this so called investigation that is now closed!!! Come on now the shoes that were at the scene were not even collected as evidence, not only that but too much time lapsed between discovering this young mans body and the coroner being notified. This makes me wonder what were they trying to hide/cover up.

    • Wildflower on said:

      How about the school refusing to release any video of the young man at the school? How crazy and unheard of is that! And to add insult to injury they take the young mans organs. This is the kind of shit that would make me go postal and shoot up some shit.

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