UPDATE: 10/31/13 1:30 PM EST
According to USA Today, a federal prosecutor in Georgia said he will investigate the case of Kendrick Johnson, the 17-year-old who was found dead inside a rolled-up wrestling mat at his high school gym in January.
U.S. Attorney Michael Moore made the announcement on Thursday, one day after a judge ordered authorities to release all surveillance video reviewed the day Kendrick Johnson died.
For information about the released video, see below.
A judge ordered that the recordings be released on Wednesday at the request of Kendrick’s parents in an effort to find out exactly what happened to their son. But the footage, which you can view above, does not show the moment of Kendrick’s death, leaving his family with a slew of unanswered questions about how their son died.
One part of the newly released footage shows Johnson walking into the gym and onto the basketball court where other people are playing. The publicly released video does not show Johnson’s death or anything leading up to it. Hours of additional footage may come from cameras inside and outside the gym.
An autopsy revealed that Johnson, who was found dead at Lowndes High School in Valdosta, Ga., on Jan. 11, was the victim of a freak accident. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation ruled that he suffocated inside an upright gym mat after he fell in headfirst reaching for a shoe.
But upon exhuming his body in May, Johnson’s parents were informed that the death was not accidental. They now believe their son was murdered.
Despite the video not showing the family what actually happened, attorney Benjamin Crump says they aren’t deterred.
“This is not a home run, but it gets us on first base,” Crump, a civil rights lawyer who had previously worked with Trayvon Martin’s family, told WXIA after the meeting.
The Johnson family, which has requested a coroner’s inquest into their son’s death, will have unrestricted access to view all of the video footage, according to the judge’s ruling.
And they’re not giving up, no matter how hard the process gets.
Asked Wednesday about watching his son’s final moments on video, Kendrick’s father, Kenneth Johnson, said: “It’s just something we have to do. And so we’re fighting for Kendrick ‘til the end.”
We’ll keep you updated on the latest in this tragic case.
SOURCE: NBC | VIDEO SOURCE: NBC