The Mississippi memorial sign marking the spot where Emmett Till’s mutilated body was discovered has been found riddled with bullet holes just over a month since it was last vandalized.
The NY Daily News reports that the sign has been routinely vandalized since it went up in 2007. And according to the Clarion-Ledger, this would mark the fourth time the sign will need to be replaced. The third time was only 35 days before the most recent incident.
Till’s 1955 murder became the catalyst for the Civil Rights Movement after two white men kidnapped, tortured, and brutally killed the Chicago teen for whistling at a white woman while visiting his uncle in Money, Mississippi. J.W. Milam and Roy Bryant, who later confessed to the murder, were acquitted by an all-white jury.
But the once-closed lynching case of Till has been reopened in the last few months. After receiving a report in late March from the U.S. Justice Department with “new information,” Congress has decided to further investigate the circumstances around his killing.
The recent information brought forth in the Justice Department report has not been elaborated upon, however, there’s speculation that the intel comes from a book titled, “The Blood of Emmett Till” which was released around the same time that the report was filed. In the book, Carolyn Bryant Donham, the white woman who initially accused Till of sexual harassment, admits to lying in her testimony and goes on record saying, “Nothing that boy did could ever justify what happened to him.”
In 2007, the Emmett Till Memorial Commission installed eight site markers, including a memorial sign at the location where the 14-year-old’s body was found three days after he had been murdered. The signs commemorating him have been frequent targets of vandalism in the state.