Kendrick Johnson family wants homicide investigation - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Kendrick Johnson family wants homicide investigation

Posted: Updated: Sep 9, 2013 05:04 PM
  • More WALB News10 HeadlinesMore News HeadlinesMore>>

  • Albany cheerleading team could be on reality show

    Albany cheerleading team could be on reality show

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 11:42 PM EDT2014-07-31 03:42:06 GMT
    Dr. Latonya Peterson, Assistant CoachDr. Latonya Peterson, Assistant Coach
    An Albany cheerleading team could be featured on a reality show. More than 50 girls tried out to join the two time national champion Albany Elite “Tiger Paws.”More >>
    An Albany cheerleading team could be featured on a reality show. More than 50 girls tried out to join the two time national champion Albany Elite “Tiger Paws.”More >>
  • Veterans to learn about benefits at American Legion event

    Veterans to learn about benefits at American Legion event

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 11:34 PM EDT2014-07-31 03:34:18 GMT
    William D. Simmons, American Legion 2nd District CommanderWilliam D. Simmons, American Legion 2nd District Commander
    American Legion leaders are preparing for an event to help South Georgia veterans learn more about the benefits they earned. More >>
    American Legion leaders are preparing for an event to help South Georgia veterans learn more about the benefits they earned. More >>
  • MCLB hosts education summit

    MCLB hosts education summit

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 11:26 PM EDT2014-07-31 03:26:53 GMT
    Latreesa Perryman, MCLB School Liaison Latreesa Perryman, MCLB School Liaison
    Military families got to ask questions about the best education choices for their children .Superintendents and other officials from public, private, home school, and online institutions in Dougherty, Lee, and Worth Counties attended Wednesday night’s Military Child Education Summit at the Marine Corps Logistics Base.More >>
    Military families got to ask questions about the best education choices for their children .Superintendents and other officials from public, private, home school, and online institutions in Dougherty, Lee, and Worth Counties attended Wednesday night’s Military Child Education Summit at the Marine Corps Logistics Base.More >>
VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) -

Relatives of Kendrick Johnson are now asking for a new homicide investigation into his death.

For 23 weeks now Kendrick Johnson's family has sat on this corner holding signs, and demanding answers. The 17-year-old was found dead in a rolled up wrestling mat in the old Lowndes High gym in January. The GBI ruled his death an accident. Investigators believe he fell inside the mat as he was retrieving an article of clothing and got stuck inside. But the family believes he was murdered.

"We always believed from the start that it wasn't an accident," said his Grandmother, Barbara English.  

And in May, a judge granted them permission to exhume the body. They hired Florida forensic pathologist William Anderson to conduct a second autopsy. Anderson says his findings are not consistent with the GBI's original death ruling, positional asphyxia. He says Johnson died by "unexplained, apparent non-accidental, blunt-force trauma." He tells WALB a homicide investigation needs to be opened because Johnson's injuries appear to be inflicted by another.

For the family this report confirms their suspicions all along. "I've always felt like something in that gym happened, somebody knows something," said Johnson's Aunt, Lydia Tooley-Whitlock.

"It's just hard, we need answers. If anybody has any answers please come forward and say something. Don't let this case slip away, because you never know it could be your child," said Aunt, Tesha Tooley.

Now it's up to federal and state authorities to decide if they want to review the case and open up an investigation.

GBI officials tell us they stand by their original autopsy report.

U.S. Attorney Michael Moore says he is monitoring the situation but has not opened up an investigation.

Copyright 2013 WALB.  All rights reserved.