Danye Jones was found by his mother, Ferguson activist Melissa McKinnies, dead, hanging from a tree.
Jones, 24, was discovered at approximately 4:51 a.m. on Oct. 17. Although his death was ruled a suicide and the police are awaiting toxicology reports, the distraught McKinnies took to Facebook speculating her son’s demise was caused by a lynching, not a suicide.
In a now-deleted Facebook post, she posted the photos of her dead son hanging from the tree with a caption that read: “4:51 a.m. and sick with grief but ready to get up and fight for my baby.”
McKinnies has participated in numerous protests in Ferguson following the death of Michael Brown. A dedicated activist, she was a former member of the Ferguson grassroots activism group Lost Voices.
Black Twitter weighed in on the young man’s death with skepticism, regarding the suicide ruling.
Studies report that Blacks are least likely to commit suicide and, typically, the tool of choice is a handgun if suicide is considered.
Suspicious deaths of prominent activists in Ferguson haven’t gone unnoticed. This would be the fourth death involving a person connected to the Ferguson activist scene.
Three other activists preceded McKinnies’ son in death: DeAndre Joshua was found in his car with two gunshot wounds to the head the night of the Ferguson verdict in 2014. In 2016, Darren Seals was found dead with two gunshot wounds to the head in his car.
In the aforementioned incidences, both cars were also set ablaze. In 2017, Edward Crawford, the activist, whose photo went viral and became known as the Ferguson protest picture depicted him grabbing an active tear gas canister fired from police and throwing the explosive back at them, was found shot to death in his car too. His death was ruled a suicide although he was found in the backseat of the car he owned.
Jones’ case will have no further investigation.