U.S.

Federal Bureau of Investigation to review Muslim teen's hanging death in Washington state

Federal Bureau of Investigation to review Muslim teen's hanging death in Washington state

Initially, the Snohomish County Medical Examiner concluded he committed suicide, but after his family pressed, the ME changed the cause of death to undetermined.

The FBI is set to launch an investigation into the death of 18-year-old Ben Keita, who was found hanging from a tree near his Lake Stevens home on January 9.

The tree where the body was is about 12 to 14 feet from a trail, and "maybe 10 feet at most from the nearest backyard fence", Bukhari said.

"He was planning to graduate this year from Lake Stevens High School", the elder Keita told KUOW.

The allegation, which was found to be untrue, and the alleged double treatment were displays of a "common anti-Muslim stereotype", Bukhari said. "The Lake Stevens Police Department has submitted physical items for lab review and we await their results to provide additional pieces of the picture".

"No history of depression, anxiety, any psychological breakdown at all whatsoever".

The Washington state chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations is calling for the FBI to investigate the death of a Muslim teenager who was discovered hanging from a tree.


Ben, a Running Start student allowed to begin their college education while still in high school, had stopped going to class a few weeks before he went missing, police said.

Keita went missing on November 26, leaving home without taking his wallet or phone. However, Keita's body was discovered almost a month after that K9 search by a group of teenagers passing through the area.

The teen's father, Ibrahim Keita appealed for answers from the public.

Keita's family is asking anyone with information in the case to come forward.

In that same report from KIRO 7, the Federal Bureau of Investigation confirmed in a statement that it "is communicating with our police partners".

The family has complaints about the initial investigation as well, saying that there were several of Keita's coworkers that were not questioned by police in addition to several other concerns.

"The family believes that with a comprehensive investigation, with every lead and every avenue explored, we can find the reasons for how this all happened", Bukhari added. "However, we are also careful to acknowledge that in this atmosphere of fear and uncertainty where one must still declare black lives matter and where Islamophobia is alive and well, there must be a thorough investigation into the death of this young man".


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