Authorities No Longer Believe Mississippi Man, Found Hanging From Tree, Killed Himself

This case is particularly disturbing-I’ve read one other article suggests that he was the victim of a revenge murder- in any case we can likely assume that it is not a suicide and more than likely a racial hate crime.

Global Grind

Noose Source: Peter Dazeley / Getty

A black man, recently found hanging from a tree, doesn’t appear to have stepped off of anything before he died, according to a Mississippi sherriff.

Previously reported as a possible suicide, the death of 54-year old Otis Byrd is now being investigated as a possible lynching. Last seen leaving a casino, Byrd was found last Thursday hanging from a bed sheet in a Mississippi forest. Autopsy results could take days to determine if Byrd’s death was a homicide or a suicide.

The FBI, the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, and the United States Attorney’s office are all investigating the death as a potential hate crime. Byrd served 26 years in prison for murdering a woman in 1980.

We will keep you updated as new details surface.


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