A BLACK man’s family has claimed their son was “lynched” after his body parts were found scattered throughout the woods, a community member said.
Rasheem Carter’s remains were discovered in Laurel, Mississippi, one month after he was reported missing in October of last year.
The 25-year-old was doing a short-term contracting job in Taylorsville when he disappeared.
In the days leading up to his disappearance, he told his family about a disturbing dispute that he had with coworkers, his mother Tiffany Carter claimed.
“My son told me it was three truckloads of white guys trying to kill him,” the mom who spoke to him the day before he went missing said.
However, “everybody involved” with Carter’s last job was questioned by cops who “ruled them out,” Smith County Sheriff Joel Houston said.
When Carter’s remains were discovered on November 2, authorities said they did not suspect foul play.
Rasheem’s family called on high-profile attorney Ben Crump, who criticized local authorities for how they handled the early stages of the investigation.
“This was a nefarious act. This was an evil act,” Crump said in a press conference.
“Somebody murdered Rasheem Carter, and we cannot let them get away with this.”
An independent autopsy conducted by the Mississippi State Medical Examiner’s Office found that Carter’s head was severed from his body and his spinal cord was found in a different area from his head, Crump claimed.
“One thing is for certain,” Crump said. “This was not a natural killing.”
Haunting photos released by the family allegedly reveal Carter’s skull which was severed.
Crump called on the US Department of Justice to open an investigation into Carter’s death.
However, the medical examiner ruled the cause and manner of death as undetermined in the report.
The conditions of Carter’s remains at the time that the autopsy was taken made it hard to determine the exact timing of his injuries, the report states.
There were also signs of animal activity on the remains as well, according to the report, which also hindered getting an accurate understanding of his death.
Sheriff Houston maintains that there is no foul play involved in Carter’s death as prior evidence “didn’t suggest anything,” he told NBC News.
“Nothing is being swept under the rug,” Houston said. “There’s nothing to hide.”
Huston said that the department is currently waiting for the results of search warrants to rule out foul play.
A few members of Carter’s family said police told them wild animals may have torn apart his body.
“He was in so many different pieces,” Yokena Anderson, a cousin to Carter’s mother, Tiffany Carter, told the outlet.
“They wanted to tell us that he went there and fell dead and the animals were feeding off him.”
However, Crump insists that Carter’s death “was a nefarious act.”
“They have recently found remains that they believe are also Rasheem Carter at another part of where he went missing, and what that tells us is, this was a nefarious act,” Crump claimed.
“Somebody murdered Rasheem Carter. And we cannot let them get away with this,” he added.
Ricky McDonald, president of the Jefferson County NAACP chapter, also believes that Carter’s death “was not a natural death.”
“How can it not be foul play when his body was dismembered?” McDonald questioned.
The chapter president added: “How can it not be foul play when his body parts was scattered all over the land in which he was found?”
According to the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation, an autopsy on Rasheem’s remains was completed on February 2 but could not say more due to the “open and ongoing investigation.”
Rasheem’s mother said her son was spotted on a trail camera in the Mississippi woods without his shirt and carrying a large branch on the day he was reported missing.
She told Insider that the image showed that “something was wrong” and that Rasheem was “running for his life.”
“You could see there are bruises on him,” said Tiffany Carter. “When I see that picture, I know my son was somewhere struggling, somewhere running for his life.
“I really believe he was chased there.”
Sheriff Joel Houston of the Smith County Sheriff’s Office said the department is trying to look at every possibility but says there isn’t any evidence of foul play at this time.
“There is nothing being covered up. There is nothing being swept under the rug,” he said. “There’s nothing to hide.”
Houston added that he has no issues with the Department of Justice getting involved in the investigation.