Kendrick Johnson's Parents Pushing New Legislation

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By: WCTV Eyewitness News
December 18, 2014

ATLANTA, Ga. -- The parents of Kendrick Johnson were in Atlanta Thursday calling for the passage of new legislation.

The Johnson's Mission comes after the 17-year-old Valdosta teen was found dead inside a school gym mat.

His death was ruled an accident but his parents believe it's a cover-up. The legislation, called "Kendrick's Law," would require all coroner's in the U.S. to be medically licensed professionals.

They say they also plan to launch a documentary entitled "Unfortunate: What Really Happened to Kendrick Johnson."


By: Winnie Wright
November 19, 2014

Lowndes County Schools provided documents today, that they say, prove the Lowndes Wrestling team was in Macon at 4 that afternoon and not leaving the school at that time.

This is important because in yesterday's press conference, the Johnson family provided a school bus log from Lowndes High showing a departure time of 4 p.m. Which they say, means someone they believe was involved in their son's death. Someone who was supposed to be on that trip, had hours that were unaccounted for.

According to the school system an event calendar from the Georgia High School association, which they provided, shows the wrestlers had a check in time of 4 p.m. in Macon.

Johnson family attorney, Chevene King, told us the schedule means nothing without proof that the students were there.

King said, "Why don't they, they being the school system, stop being obstructionists, and give us the video? "

An attorney for the person named by the Johnsons' as a person of interest, says his legal team will be releasing evidence next week, from witnesses who they say were at the wrestling match in Macon.


By: Winnie Wright
November 18, 2014

Valdosta, GA - Tuesday, the family of Kendrick Johnson appealed to the parents of 25 Lowndes High School students; who they say, may be able to provide information about KJ's last day.

"We are asking you to appeal to your children. To ask them the questions that the police did not. To find out what they know. And please share everything that you can with the U.S Attorney's Office, or our attorneys", said Johnson Family Attorney, Chevene King.

The information in question: a school bus travel log obtained through the open records act, which supposedly shows the school's wrestling team had not yet left the campus for a tournament the afternoon their son went missing.

An attendance record, also released by the Johnsons, shows the wrestlers were let out of class at 11:30, nearly two hours before KJ was last seen alive at 1:09.

The Johnsons claim that they have evidence that one of the people they believe was involved with KJ's death was at the school and not already on the trip with the wrestling team.

The Johnson's also released video that they claim shows KJ in the lunch line with wrestlers that were supposed to have already been on the trip.

An attorney for one of the students that the Johnsons have claimed was involved says the video representing that the team didn't leave until 4:00 is incorrect. He says the wrestlers ate an early lunch and were on the bus between 12:15 and 12:30.

The Lowndes County Sheriff's Office and School System did not respond to our request for comment. U.S. Attorney Michael Moore says he has no comment at this time.


By: WCTV Eyewitness News
November 18, 2014

VALDOSTA, Ga. -- The mother and father of the teen found dead in a gym mat last January publicly appealed to the parents of 25 former and current Lowndes High School students on Tuesday, asking for their help.

Speaking through their attorney, Jackie and Kenneth Johnson said they had learned the school’s wrestling team had not left campus for a tournament the afternoon their son went missing, as previously thought.

The Johnson family attorney, Chevene B. King Jr., says that instead, school officials excused 25 Lowndes High students from class approximately four and a half hours before the chartered bus left the school parking lot headed to Macon.

“We are asking you to talk to your children to urge them, if they saw something, to say something,” said family lawyer Chevene B. King, Jr. on the Johnsons’ behalf during a Tuesday 10 a.m. press conference held on the steps of the Lowndes County Administrative & Judicial Complex in downtown Valdosta. “If they heard something, please have them share it with the U.S. Attorney’s Office.”

With the Johnsons looking on, King pointed to a poster-sized copy of an attendance record showing that Lowndes High officials released the tournament-bound athletes and others from class starting at approximately 11:30 a.m. on January 10, 2013.

He also referenced a school bus travel log that confirmed 4 p.m. as the departure time of bus driver William P. White, 66, who drove wrestling team coach Spencer Graybeal, his wife, Jennifer, a Lowndes High teacher, two other adults and the 25 students on the 2 ½-hour, 150-mile trip to Macon.

The document was secured from the school board under the Open Records Act, and suggested the group left nearly three hours after Kendrick Johnson was last seen on school surveillance video at 1:09 p.m. His body was found the next morning.

King said the departure time was important, partially because of misinformation widely reported by the media based on the investigative file.

He shared an excerpt from a Nov. 5 Atlanta Journal-Constitution article by Christian Boone, who reported, “… on the morning of Jan. 10, (student) traveled with the Lowndes wrestling team to a tournament in Macon, 152 miles away.”

In closing, the Albany lawyer also referred reporters to a 2 ½-minute video his investigative team produced after working more than a year on the case. He said their findings might be helpful to the parents of the wrestlers, give them some context and assist their children in recalling what happen that afternoon.



 
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