A Modern Day Lynching? Washington Islamic Teen Found Hanging
This kind of thing makes us really nervous. The family of a Washington State teen found hanging from a tree is looking for answers after the medical examiner changed the cause of death in the case from suicide to undetermined.
18-year-old Ben Keita went missing November 26, but his body was not found until January, hanging from a tree near his home in the Lake Stevens area, according to KIRO reports. Family members say Ben showed no signs of being suicidal.
“Ben was very happy young man,” the teen’s father, Ibrahimi Keita. “He was already in the running start program going to Everett Community College. No history of depression or anxiety. any psychological breakdown at all whatsoever.”
The medical examiner’s office says Keita’s cause of death was changed for two reasons; the rope Ben was hanged with was tied 50 feet high in the tree, and a K-9 search of the same area weeks was conducted several weeks earlier, with no sign of his body.
The Washington Chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations have asked the FBI to investigate the case.
“We just want to make sure that the expertise, the experience and the human resources of the FBI are brought to make sure everything is comprehensively investigated, no stone is left unturned,” Washington CAIR executive director Arsalan Bukhari told KIRO.
In a statement, the Seattle office of the FBI said it is “communicating with our police partners.”
“We are aware of circumstances of the individual’s death and will review them with consideration of federal law,” read the statement. “If warranted, we may conduct further investigation. A review does not necessarily result in the opening of an investigation.”
Lake Stevens police said in a statement Wednesday that the case remains open and they are awaiting results for the state crime lab in order to close the case.
Center For American-Islamic Relations