Roommates, the family of graduate student Jelani Day, whose body was found in the Illinois River, weeks after he was reported missing on August 24th, is still searching for answers surrounding his death. According to NBC News, his mother, Carmen Bolden, doesn’t believe the narrative about her son that he did something to himself and has hired civil rights attorney Benjamin Crump, who represented George Floyd’s family, to bring them justice.
During a recent press conference at the Rainbow Push Coalition’s headquarters in Chicago, Attorney Crump demanded the FBI to investigate Jelani’s case as a federal hate crime. “We are asking the FBI to make this young, Black man named Jelani Day a priority just like they did the young white woman, Gabby Petito, because his life matters just like hers,” Attorney Crump pleaded.
He wasn’t the only one who spoke out at the conference. Carmen, standing beside Attorney Crump and Rev. Jesse Jackson, also made an emotional plea for her son’s death to be taken seriously. “I’m asking you. I’m imploring you. I’m begging you. I need to know what happened to my son,” Carmen said. “I need the FBI to come in and take over. … They need to make Jelani a priority.”
This isn’t the first time Carmen has pleaded to authorities to do more. As we previously reported in September, Carmen interviewed with Newsy, where she compared Gabby’s national coverage to the coverage her son received. She explained that Jelani hadn’t been getting coverage, although he had been missing for 24 days. Carmen also stated it seemed like the effort to find him has slacked down because everyone knew about Gabby, who at the time was only missing for two days, and the FBI immediately became involved.
Roommates, we will keep you updated as more information becomes available.
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