Family & Friends of Dead Lowndes Student Arrested in Protest

By: Greg Gullberg Email
By: Greg Gullberg Email
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By Greg Gullberg
April 25, 2013

Valdosta, GA - Cheers, tears and hugs marked the scene outside the Lowndes County Jail in Valdosta Thursday evening. Eyewitness News was the only News Team there when Jacquelyn Johnson was freed at sundown.

She's one of seven protesters arrested at the Lowndes County Courthouse Thursday for demanding answers in the death of her son, 17 year old Kendrick Johnson, also known as "KJ". He was found dead at Lowndes High School, wrapped in a wrestling mat in January.

"I'm going to be right back out at the courthouse in the morning (Friday), ready to do it all over again, until we get justice," said Jacquelyn Johnson, KJ's mother.

Eyewitness News obtained video of the arrests that was shot on a cellphone camera. The video shows the protesters blocking a hallway in the lobby of the courthouse, which is illegal. That's when they're hand-cuffed and dragged away. You can hear protesters chanting "No Peace, No Justice".

This is the third straight week his family and friends have been rallying daily for an official cause of death on the sidewalks of Downtown Valdosta.

A spokesman for the Lowndes County Sheriff's department would not give us any information on the arrests or their charges Thursday.

Official autopsy and toxicology tests have yet to be released. Preliminary reports show no signs of foul play, and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation expects a full report to be completed in the next few weeks.

While family was waiting on Jacquelyn Johnson's release from the Lowndes County Jail, the jail went into lock down, and protesters were pushed back the length of a football field. Deputies on the scene said there was a "threat", but they would not specify.

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