What REALLY happened to Alfred Wright? The FBI and United States Justice Department are both investigating the death of a 28-year-old black man, who went missing from a Jasper Texas grocery store, on November 7, 2013.
Alfred Wright, a married father of three, was found dead 18 days after he went missing, near his home in Jasper Texas. He was found by his father, naked, except for his tennis shoes, a single sock and his underwear. His cell phone was found tucked inside of the single sock he was wearing. Wright’s throat was slit, he was missing one ear and some of his teeth were gone. The Sabine County Sheriff’s Department declared Wright’s death a drug overdose.
The police and medical examiner’s findings do not fit with the facts of the case.
Wright, who worked as a physical therapist, was on his way home after meeting with a patient. Stopping at CL&M Grocery, he called his wife, Lauren, to tell her that he was having car problems, and needed assistance. Mrs. Wright then called her husband’s parents to ask if they could help him, since she was taking care of the couple’s three children, in their Jasper home.
When she attempted to call her husband back to let him know that help was on the way, Lauren Wright became alarmed. Instead of hearing his voice, as she expected, all she heard was what she later described as “gurgling sounds” and heavy breathing.
“He was in distress of some sort. He was not responding to anything I was saying,”
she told CNN.
When Wright’s parents arrived at the grocery store, they found the man’s truck, but Wright was nowhere to be found.
The family reported Wright’s disappearance to the police. A day after he disappeared, his watch and ID turned up on a farm near where he went missing.
The Sheriff’s Department investigation is being called into question.
After only 4 days, the Saline County Sheriff’s Department called off the search, saying they had “exhausted all resources,” in their efforts to find the missing man.
According to Wright’s family, the Sheriff’s Department immediately tried to link Wright’s disappearance to drugs. His family asserts that Wright had no history of drug abuse, and that they had never known him to use drugs of any kind.
Wright’s family did not give up searching for him, however. 18 days later, his father found his body, lying in the underbrush, in an area the Sheriff’s Department claimed to have searched weeks before.
The Sabine County Sheriff’s department reported Wright’s death as an accidental overdose. The autopsy report states that cocaine, methamphetamine, and amphetamine were found in his system. Wright’s family was not satisfied with the conclusion. They demanded that an independent medical examiner be brought in to examine Alfred Wright’s body.
An independent expert found suspicion of homicide after examining Wright’s body.
After a lengthy delay, independent forensic pathologist, Leeane Grossberg, was given access to Wright’s body. Grossberg’s findings contradicted those of Sabine County’s original autopsy report, which claimed there was no evidence of homicide.
“Based on the information I have thus far, I have a high index of suspicion that this is a homicide,”
Grossberg said during a December press conference.
“I base that opinion on the circumstances surrounding his death, where and how the body was found and my findings at autopsy. My examination was limited due to the somewhat advanced decomposition of the body and due to the fact that it was a second autopsy, But I did see findings that were suspicious for homicidal violence.”
A video camera that was set up at the grocery where Wright’s truck was found, disappeared soon after he went missing. Additionally, while the Saline Sherriff’s Department officially stated that they had ‘exhausted all resources,’ while searching for the man, evidence shows that the local law enforcement agency turned down offers of financial and volunteer assistance prior to calling off the search.
Jasper Texas has a history of white supremacist violence.
In December, a spokesman for the FBI announced that the agency would be joining the Texas Rangers, in their investigation into Wright’s death. More recently, the US Justice Department also became involved in Wright’s case.
While there’s no evidence at this time that Wright’s death was racially motivated, there is clearly reason to suspect there’s more going on than meets the eye. The Wright’s were a bi-racial couple living in an area of Texas which is notorious for racial intolerance. In the late 1990’s, James Byrd Jr. was murdered by three men in Jasper, Texas, at least two of whom were members of a white supremacist organization. The men tied Byrd to the back of a pick up truck, dragging him for three miles down an asphalt road.
Here’s more on the story, as reported by The Young Turks: