The family of Emmett Till is calling once again for action to be taken against Carolyn Bryant Donham after Till’s cousin, Patricia Sterling, filed a lawsuit on Tuesday.
The suit comes following the discovery of an unserved warrant for her arrest in the basement of a Mississippi courthouse in late June of 2022.
Over six decades ago, Till, a 14-year-old African American male from Chicago, was staying with relatives in Money, Mississippi when he allegedly whistled at Donham. When told of Till’s purported actions, Donham’s husband and his half-brother beat and tortured Till until he died from a gunshot to the head.
The young man’s death has fueled a civil rights movement that has lasted for decades with his renewed case being closed once again in December 2021, leaving Donham free of any charges.
Six months after the case was closed, a warrant was found in the basement of the courthouse, calling for Donham’s arrest one day after Till’s death on August 28, 1955. Despite the warrant being publicized during the time of its issuing, Donham was not arrested as the Leflore County sheriff at the time reportedly stated that he did not want to bother the mother of two.
In early August of 2022, a Leflore County grand jury declined to indict Donham, stating that there was not a sufficient amount of evidence to indict the 88-year-old.
Now, Sterling is looking to sue Leflore County Sheriff Ricky Banks in an effort for law enforcement to serve the warrant on Bryant. Banks has previously stated that he did not know of the warrant’s existence prior to its discovery in June.