In may, we previously reported that, A Black 19-year-old Derontae Martin was found dead in what police determined was a suicide. However, the young man’s grieving family is pushing for more information and questioning the way police have handled the tragedy; as Derontae was found dead in the attic of home owned by a white man who frequently posted confederate flags; and other “white pride” posts on social media. His body was discovered following a prom party held on the property. The homeowner has not be charged with a crime nor made an official suspect; but it’s not sure how long that status will remain unchanged after this latest update.
According to NBCNews, a Missouri jury has ruled that Derontae’s death was not self-inflicted as police and the county coroner we’re quick to announce. The jury consisting of a Black man, a white man, and four white women found that Derontae died as a result of violence done to him. The family is happy and hopefully that their suspicions will finally be taken seriously, according to KSDK:
“We don’t have the answers to who did it, we don’t have the answers to why they did it,” said Kimberly Robinson; Derontae Martin’s grandmother, “but one thing is for sure and two things are for certain, God ain’t through yet.”
Dr. Russell Deidiker, the pathologist who performed the autopsy; testified that Martin died from a gunshot wound to his head that was fired at close contact. A second autopsy, commissioned by Martin’s family, determined that the gun was fired from farther away.