The FBI has been called to investigate the death of a black man who found hanging in Piedmont Park in Atlanta. Officers arrived to the scene shortly before 5 a.m. on the morning of July 7th, and the man was immediately pronounced dead by emergency officials. The Fulton County medical examiner ruled the death a suicide.

On the heels of the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, the timing and manner of this man’s death left many people skeptical of that conclusion.

Mayor Kasim Reed of Atlanta issued a statement, which reads: “I am deeply saddened by the loss of a young man’s life last night in Piedmont Park. 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. We have also referred the case to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. 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 circumstances surrounding this young man’s death. 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.”

The victim’s name and information will not be released until his loved ones can be reached for notification, and there will be a Civil Rights protest taking place on Friday, July 8th.

The heartbreaking pattern of unarmed black men being killed by the police prompted Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) to plead with FBI Director James Comey to do something about it. “Mr. Director, if you do nothing else in your 2,000-plus days left, you have to go help us get a hold of this issue,” Cummings said. “It is so painful. I can’t even begin to tell you.”

“I hope you watch them,” he told Comey in reference to the videos of the killings that have circulated across the news and social media sites. “There’s something wrong with this picture.”

Yes, there definitely is.


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