Woman Whose Accusation Led to the 1955 Lynching of 14-Year-Old Emmett Till Dies at the Age of 88

Carolyn Bryant Donham died Tuesday night while in hospice care, according to the Associated Press.

The woman whose accusations led to the lynching of Emmett Till has died at the age of 88, according to reports.

Carolyn Bryant Donham, 88, the white woman who accused Black 14-year-old Emmett Till of improper advances died Tuesday night while in hospice care in Louisiana, according to a coroner's report obtained by the Associated Press.

When Donham was 21 she accused Till of making ‘improper advances’ towards her while she was working at a grocery store in Mississippi. Till was there visiting his family after having traveled from Chicago, CNN reported. 

She then pointed out the teen to her then-husband and his half-brother, who proceeded to kidnap and brutally murder Till.

The men beat Till so brutally, the teen was only able to be identified due to an initial ring on his finger, the History Channel states. Both men were acquitted of murder by an all-white jury but later confessed during a magazine interview, according to CNN.

Despite several changes to her testimony and contradicting statements, Donham was never indicted on charges relating to Till’s death, ABC News reported. 

“After hearing every aspect of the investigation and evidence collected regarding Donham’s involvement, the Grand Jury returned a ‘No Bill’ to the charges of both Kidnapping and Manslaughter,” the Leflore County District Attorney said in August, CNN reported.

“The murder of Emmett Till remains an unforgettable tragedy in this country and the thoughts and prayers of this nation continue to be with the family of Emmett Till,” Leflore County District Attorney said according to CNN.

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