Mississippi Press Conference Presses for Federal Investigation into Hanging Death

Attorney Valerie Hicks-Powe speaks at the press conference in Jackson, while NAACP Mississippi State Conference President Derrick Johnson looks on.

The Mississippi State Conference of the NAACP joined family members of Frederick Jermaine Carter in Jackson on Thursday for a press conference demanding a federal investigation into the death of the 26 year-old. Carter was found Dec. 3, hanging from a tree in a field near Greenwood, Mississippi.

The coroner declared the death a suicide, but a lawyer for the family argues that the the state has not released physical evidence or an autopsy report to the family,

The family's lawyer, Valerie Hicks-Powe says said a private medical examiner performed an autopsy on Carter's body. She said the state's failure to release physical evidence and a full autopsy report to the family is delaying the private examiner's report.

State Conference President Derrick Johnson told reporters, "What we would like to do is to ensure there is a legitimate, full investigation is taking place. At that time, we will provide whatever information that the Carter family and their attorney have gathered up to this point, to ensure the individuals who are doing the investigation have all the documentation needed to come to a clear conclusion."

State Representatives Simmons, Perkins and Jordan Join Mississippi State Conference President Derrick Johnson, Attorney Valerie Hicks-Powe, Civil Rights leader Hollis Watkins and Mrs. Carter-Evans at the Jackson press conference