Emory University Students Explore Cold Case Files From the Civil Rights Era

James Brazier
James Brazier

In 2008, Congress enacted the Emmett Till Unsolved Civil Rights Crime Act that provided funds for opening up cold case files of murder cases during the civil rights era. Since 2011, Emory University in Atlanta has offered a course on the cold case files. Students are instructed on investigative journalism techniques and then pursue leads on cold case files from Georgia’s past.

The main focus of effort is the death of James C. Brazier, who died in 1958 five days after being dragged from his home and beaten by police. An all-White grand jury failed to indict the police officers involved in the beating and a jury in a federal civil suit ruled against Brazier’s family in an attempt to win damages.

The Emory students’ research can be found at a new website.

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