Time to close Johnson case

Published 6:00 am Monday, February 5, 2001

“Truth crushed to the ground will rise again.”

That quote from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was used thisweek by those who continue to insist that the death of Kokomo youthRaynard Johnson was murder — not a suicide as ruled by threeinvestigations.

Johnson, 17, was found hanging from a pecan tree outside hisfamily’s home last June 16. Since then, the Rev. Jesse Jackson’sRainbow/PUSH Coalition has maintained that Johnson was the victimof a racially-motivated lynching.

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The results of the latest investigation, this one conductedby the United States Department of Justice, were announcedThursday. Federal officials said they found no evidence of a crimein the death of the young man. Marion County and stateinvestigators had already ruled the death a suicide.

Yet, there are those who still refuse to put this matter torest. They vow to push on with “real investigations.”

Enough is enough.

The death of this young man — as would be the death ofanyone so promising — by his own hand is an unspeakable tragedy.Those who say they want ‘truth’ should focus their attention on theneeds of the young people who remain in Mississippi in an effort toprevent other such tragedies.

But, they won’t.

The ‘truth’ is they’re too busy getting attention forthemselves.