Jackson - An alarming situation has unfolded in Jackson, Mississippi, where 215 bodies were discovered buried in unmarked graves behind a state jail. Families of the deceased were left in the dark until last month. Some grave sites were only identified by a number and a metal rod, raising concerns about the lack of transparency and respect in handling the deceased.
The families of the deceased's attorneys are calling for a thorough investigation into the circumstances surrounding these unmarked graves.
The revelation began with Dexter Wade's death in March 2023, in which a police officer fatally hit him. Shockingly, his family was not informed of his death, and he was buried without their knowledge. Activist Arthur "Silky Slim" Reed, working alongside attorney Ben Crump, sheds light on the distressing details.
Wade's case took a disturbing turn when it was revealed that he had identification on him. This identification was given to the lead detective by the medical examiner. However, the detective claimed to have called without receiving an answer and took no further action. Reed says the situation in Mississippi is deeply troubling, with six additional bodies now discovered in similar unmarked graves.
Reed describes the grim scene at the burial site, where buzzards flew overhead. The bodies were placed in shadowed graves without embalming, leading to a disturbing stench that attracted scavengers. He emphasizes the inhumanity of such treatment and calls for a more dignified handling of the deceased.
The families affected were not notified, and many still believed their loved ones were missing. Reed emphasizes that this issue extends beyond race, as both white and black individuals are buried in the same manner. The lack of identification and the practice of assigning only numbers to the graves further compound the anguish of the families involved.
Despite the alarming nature of these revelations, a humane resolution is needed. Reed, Crump, and attorney Dennis Week advocate for a federal investigation to uncover the truth behind these unmarked graves. They also advocate for the potential violation of civil rights in cases like Dexter Wade's.
In Dexter Wade's case, numerous civil rights were violated. These included failing to notify the family and burying him without permission despite knowing his identity. Reed expresses deep concern about the actions taken by the authorities considering an ongoing lawsuit involving the police.
The families affected are demanding justice and transparency.