FBI Set To Review Death Of Muslim Teen Found Hanged After Medical Examiner Changes Manner Of Death From Suicide To Undetermined

By Claire Parker, Parent Herald March 03, 10:36 am

The FBI will review the death of a black Muslim teen who was found dead and hanged near his home in Washington. This comes after the medical examiner who handled the teen changed the manner of death from suicide to undetermined.

The family of the 18-year-old, Ben Keita, also wanted to get answers as to why the manner of death was changed. They pleaded for anyone who could possibly tell them what really happened to the teen. Keita went missing last November and in January, his body was seen hanging from a tree in a wooded area, Q13 Fox reported.

When Keita's body was found, it was believed the body was in a semi-frozen state for up to six weeks. The medical examiner, Stanley Adams, said he did not see any evidence of trauma beyond the evidence of hanging however they decided to change the manner of death to undetermined because of the circumstances surrounding the incident such as "the very high tree branch, uncertain location of the decedent for the 6 weeks prior to discovery (with a report that the area where the body was found had been previously searched)." Also, Keita never exhibited suicidal attempts in the past, New York Post reported.

There were three searches near the home of Keita since he disappeared. One search had a helicopter deployed to help in the searching but they never saw the body of the teen in the area where he was found hanged. The rope that was used to hang Keita's body was tied to a branch that was 50 feet high and his feet dangled up to 8 feet above the ground.

The father of Keita, Ibrahima, described his son as a happy child and they believe someone knows something about the death of their son. Lake Stevens police also said their investigation remains open as lab results have not been returned yet.

Ayn Dietrich-Williams, a spokeswoman for the FBI's Seattle Division, confirmed they received the circumstances surrounding the matter and will review them with consideration of federal law. However, they have to determine first if the reinvestigation is warranted before they re-open the case. 

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