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NAACP visits Valdosta for Kendrick Johnson rally

The Body of Kendrick Johnson Body Exhumed
Posted at 2:53 PM, Jun 14, 2013
and last updated 2013-10-31 09:21:24-04

VALDOSTA, Ga. (WTXL)--Georgia's NAACP president visits Valdosta during a rally for Kendrick Johnson.

President Edward Dubose spoke at the Lowndes County Judicial Complex where Johnson's family and friends gathered.

For months now the family has been protesting, saying they want answers in their son's death.

The 17-year old was found dead in a rolled up gym mat at Lowndes High School in January.

An autopsy ruled his death as an accident but his parents believe foul play was involved.

Johnson's body is now being autopsied for a second time.

The family expects to have the results within two weeks.

June 14, 2013

VALDOSTA, Ga. (WTXL)--The family of Kendrick Johnson is hoping for new answers.

His parents had his body exhumed Friday morning so a second autopsy can be performed.

This after an autopsy by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation ruled his death as an accident.

The family attorney says now a forensic pathologist will review the GBI's findings and conduct a second autopsy.

It's been five months since Kendrick Johnson was found dead at Lowndes High School. Friday his body was exhumed from his grave site at Sunset Hill Cemetery.

"If it's foul play and someone did that to him, they're going to pay," said Kendrick's grandfather Eddie Tooley.

The family of Kendrick Johnson admits it is not an easy decision to have his body exhumed, but they say it's the only way for them to get closure and the answers they need.

The 17-year-old's body was found January 11th in a rolled up gym mat at Lowndes High School. after an autopsy, investigators with the Lowndes County Sheriff's Office and GBI ruled Johnson's death an accident.

Johnson's family members are questioning the findings, saying they believe Kendrick died as the result of foul play.

They've now hired a pathologist in Orlando to conduct a second autopsy.

"We also anticipate their may be evidence that his death was a cover up," said the family's attorney Chevene King.

"It's sad it has to be done this way, to have to dig him up to get the truth but if that's what it takes, that what it's going to be," said Tooley.

While no one from the sheriff's office was available to go on camera, a spokesman told me by phone they stand by their investigation, denying there's any kind of cover up.

No word yet on when results from the second autopsy could be returned.

June 14, 2013 8:45 a.m.

LOWNDES COUNTY, Ga. (WTXL) -- Family and friends gathered to witness the latest phase in the investigation of Kendrick Johnson's death on Friday, June 14; the body of the 17-year-old Lowndes County High School student was unearthed for a second autopsy.

Johnson died in January; his body was reportedly found wrapped in a mat at the school's gymnasium.  The Lowndes County Sheriff's Office ruled the death accidental, but Johnson's family protested, demanding further investigation.

The case drew national attention, even drawing in the support of the NAACP, civil rights activist Al Sharpton, and hundreds of supporters at an event, "Justice for KJ," held in May.

In response, a judge approved the family's request for a second autopsy. Now that the body has been exhumed, a forensic scientist in Orlando will examine the body. The results of the inspection are expected at the end of June.