The FBI said this week it will review the case of a black, Muslim teen who was found hanging from a tree in Washington state, the Associated Press reports.
Ben Keita, 18, was reported missing in November, according to local TV station KIRO 7. In January, he was found dead in the woods near his home.
There were no other injuries aside from the hanging, which led the Snohomish County medical examiner to initially rule the death a suicide, the TV station reported. But when the boy’s parents wanted more information, the medical examiner changed the cause of death to undetermined.
Local police are still investigating the death, according to the Daily Herald, newspaper based in Everett, Washington. A spokesperson for the FBI’s Seattle office told the paper it was doing a review but that would not automatically lead to an investigation.
Keita’s parents have asked the FBI to investigate their son’s death and told local news that the 18-year-old did not have a history of mental illness.
“He was planning to graduate this year from Lake Stevens High School,” Ibrahima Keita, the boy’s father, told KUOW, a Seattle public radio station. “He was already in the Running Start program at Everett Community College and he was dreaming of becoming a medical doctor and work as a medical examiner. Now those dreams are over.”