The family of Emmett Till is calling on authorities to arrest the white woman who wrongfully accused the boy of rape after an unserved warrant has resurfaced.
The August 1955 warrant accusing Carolyn Bryant Donham of kidnapping 14-year-old Till was recently discovered in the basement of a Mississippi courthouse, according to the Associated Press on Wednesday (June 29). Family members and the Emmett Till Legacy Foundation reportedly found the legitimate document last week during a search.
“Serve it and charge her,” Teri Watts, the daughter of Till’s cousin who lead the Foundation, told AP. “This is what the state of Mississippi needs to go ahead.”
Leflore County Circuit Clerk Elmus Stockstill certified it as genuine, which identified Donham as “Mrs. Roy Bryant,” according to the news outlet. Reporters also claim the Leflore County sheriff in 1955 didn’t want to “bother” Donham with the warrant because she had two young kids.
“This is the first time I’ve known about a warrant,” Ricky Banks, the current Leflore County sheriff, told AP. “I will see if I can get a copy of the warrant and get with the DA and get their opinion on it.”
The discovery comes over 6 months after the FBI closed an investigation into Till’s murder after finding a lack of evidence. They also couldn’t prove that Donham lied about the accusations against the 14-year-old boy, nor could they find evidence of her recanting her testimony, as alleged in the book The Blood Of Emmett Till.
The young teen, who was accused of making sexual advances at Donham in 1955, was kidnapped, tortured, and killed by her then-husband Roy Bryant and his half-brother J.W. William. After the duo was acquitted of murder charges by an all-white jury, they admitted to murdering Till in a paid interview with a magazine.
Emmett Till’s devastating story is often highlighted as a stark example of racial vigilante justice in America and the gross violence against Black Americans.
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