Division of Justice Investigating Six Black Males Killed Throughout 1970 Augusta Riots

Over 50 years later, and two days forward of the anniversary, the Division of Justice has introduced an official investigation into the six Black males who had been shot and killed by law enforcement officials through the Augusta Riot of 1970.

In line with the DOJ’s newest report back to Congress, they’re investigating the killings of six Black males as a part of the civil rights “chilly instances” from many years in the past, WJBF stories. The “Augusta Six” included John Bennett, Sammie L. McCullough, Charlie Mack Murphy, James Stokes, Mack Wilson, and William Wright Jr.

Authorities are asking for witnesses from the Augusta Riots to come back ahead to assist in their investigation. The riots started when 16-year-old Charles Oatman was crushed to loss of life whereas in police custody.

Oatman had been arrested after capturing his 5-year-old niece. On the time, authorities reported that Oatman died after falling from his bunk. Nevertheless, an post-mortem report discovered fluid in his lungs, WJBF stories. Carrie Mays, who labored as an undertaker on the time, concluded that Oatman died from being drowned.

Information of Oatman’s loss of life sparked outrage, resulting in a race revolt within the space. In the course of the riots, six Black males had been reportedly killed by law enforcement officials who shot them of their backs. Nevertheless, as a substitute of going through disciplinary motion, the officers concerned turned leaders of their area.

“And never solely had been they killed, however they had been additionally shot of their backs. And never solely had been they shot within the again, however all the white law enforcement officials that shot them of their backs had been promoted,” mentioned Dr. Mallory Ok. Millender.

Millender was a younger college member at Paine Faculty through the Augusta riots and remembers one of many officers concerned being named officer of the 12 months.

“What occurred to these Black males and why it occurred has primarily been sanitized,” Millender mentioned. “If you hear in regards to the killing that occurred through the riot, they hardly ever inform you that they had been all shot within the again.”

Whereas Oatman’s loss of life stays a thriller, Millender is hopeful that discovering justice for the six Black males murdered will a minimum of convey some solace to their households.

“I believe it should convey justice to these households of these victims who’ve been labeled as looters,” he mentioned.

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