Murder charge due against two in death of negro boy

September 01 1955
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GREENWOOD, Miss., (UP) -- Local authorities today planned an all-out murder prosecution in the kidnap-killing of a Chicago Negro boy who purportedly insulted a white woman at a rural store.

Sheriff George Smith of Leflore County said storekeeper Roy Bryant and his half-brother, J.W. Milan, definitely would be charged with murdering 15-year-old Emmett Till, a victim of polio.

Bryant and Milan, both white, admitted kidnapping the boy but claimed they released him unharmed.

The boy's nude body, shot in the head and weighted down with 125 pounds of metal, was found in a river yesterday morning.

News of the discovery of the body brought an immediate angry reaction from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and the denunciations of the State of Mississippi.

In New York, Roy Wilkins, NAACP executive secretary, said the slaying was a "lynching."

In Chicago, Henry Huff, chairman of the NAACP legal redress committee, protested to State and Federal authorities.

Mrs. Mamie Bradley, Till's mother, said in Chicago that she would "fight to the end to see that justice is done," and added, "the State of Mississippi will have to pay for this."

Smith quoted Bryant and Milan as admitting abducting Till from the home of Moses Wright, an uncle Till was visiting, after Mrs. Bryant said Till was the one who insulted her.

But they claimed they afterward released Till when Mrs. Bryant later said he was not "the one.?

Till, or someone, was said to have directed a "wolf whistle" at Mrs. Bryant during a visit of several of Negro boys to the store and upon leaving said "goodbye" in a manner that Bryant and Milan considered insulting.

Maurie Wright, 16, Till's second cousin told United Press this account of what occurred at the Bryant store last Saturday night:

"Emmett went into the store and asked for some bubble and left after telling the women 'goodbye.' Outside, Emmett gave a 'wolf call.' I told Emmett to be careful of what he said in the store."

Maurice said his cousin stuttered, the result of an attack of polio and "sometimes didn't make sense."

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