Of­fi­cial: Re­newed probe prompted by 2017 book

The Norwalk Hour - - OBITUARIES/NEWS -

A re­newed in­ves­ti­ga­tion into the bru­tal slay­ing of Em­mett Till was prompted by a 2017 book that re­vealed lies by a key fig­ure in the 1955 case that helped build mo­men­tum for the civil rights move­ment, a fed­eral of­fi­cial in Birm­ing­ham, Ala., said Thurs­day.

A fed­eral of­fi­cial fa­mil­iar with the mat­ter told The As­so­ci­ated Press that in­for­ma­tion pub­lished in the book led fed­eral in­ves­ti­ga­tors to re-ex­am­ine the case. The of­fi­cial wasn’t au­tho­rized to dis­cuss the mat­ter pub­licly and spoke to AP on con­di­tion of anonymity.

The re­open­ing of the Till case was re­vealed in a fed­eral re­port sent to law­mak­ers in March that said the Jus­tice Depart­ment had re­ceived un­spec­i­fied “new in­for­ma­tion.”

The book “The Blood of Em­mett Till” by Ti­mothy B. Tyson quotes a white woman, Carolyn Don­ham, as say­ing dur­ing a 2008 in­ter­view that she wasn’t truth­ful when she tes­ti­fied that the black teen grabbed her, whis­tled and made sex­ual ad­vances at a Mis­sis­sippi store in 1955.

Tyson told re­porters Thurs­day that he was con­tacted by the FBI weeks af­ter his book was pub­lished in Jan­uary 2017, and he fur­nished them in­ter­view record­ings and other re­search ma­te­ri­als. He doesn’t think his re­search alone would sup­port new charges but said in­ves­ti­ga­tors may be able to link it to other ma­te­rial in their pos­ses­sion.


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