In the early hours of Thursday morning, a man was found on a tree in the city's park.
On Thursday afternoon, Atlanta mayor Kasim Reed addressed the constiuents of his city to inform them that the case of a young Black teen found hanging from a tree in Piedmont Park had been referred to the FBI.
“I am deeply saddened by the loss of a young man’s life last night in Piedmont Park,” he said. “This disturbing event demands our full attention. The Atlanta Police Department (APD) is conducting a robust investigation into his death and I have asked to receive regular briefings on the status of the investigation.”
Shortly before 5 a.m. on Thursday morning, officers were called to the park where they discovered the unidentified body hanging by a rope.
According to the Fulton County medical examiner, the initial cause of death has been ruled a suicide although an autopsy has not yet been performed.
On social media, the news of the incident has been referred to as the #PiedmontParkHanging, a "modern day lynching" of sorts.
Public outcry and demand for answers prompted Mayor Reed to ask for people's patience.
“Everything we have seen suggests that there was no foul play involved, but I want to state clearly and unequivocally that we will not prejudge the situation,” he added. “APD will share all evidence discovered in the course of the investigation. We ask for the public’s support and cooperation as we work to resolve this matter.”
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