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Old 07-01-2004, 10:18 PM   #1
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Default Andre Jones: Murder or Suicide?

Do any of you remember the case regarding a teenager, who had been pulled over by Police and was arrested without given reason as to why he was?

He died in a county jail about 40 miles away from the first county jail he was taken to. Also, hours after he went missing in the cell in which he was held, he was found, by a cellmate, hanging from one of his sneaker laces in a dimmed shower stall. His bare feet were actually touching the floor. His parents were informed that he had commited suicide but they were informed very casually as if it wasn't a big deal.
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Old 07-11-2004, 04:58 AM   #2
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Post Andre Jones

Yeah, I remember that case. I think that he was murdered by one of the other prisoners!
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Old 07-11-2004, 04:32 PM   #3
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I think the police did it. They were probably trying to restrain him by getting him a chokehold, and they ended up strangling him. To cover it up, they made it look like he hung himself.
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Old 07-12-2004, 09:30 PM   #4
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It just seems very strange to me that the area, in which the shower stalls were located and also where his body was found, was the only dim area throughout the whole cell. Also, Andre's stepfather stated that one of the inmates had mentioned to him that he was taken out of the cell and then brought back in a wheelchair. THAT also strikes me as strange.
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Old 07-23-2004, 08:59 PM   #5
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Andre was more than likely murdered. Evem a separate pathologist who exhumed the body and studied it found evidence of other stuff and claimed as his find that the hanging was staged.

He was killed, maybe even accidentally, but then the cover up to stage a hanging went into effect. Too many other people saw or heard strange things happening, including the wheelchair affidavit. Some cell-mates even later heard that the shoelace thing was staged to make it look like a suicide.
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Old 07-24-2004, 04:34 AM   #6
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Check out this webpage:

http://rwor.org/a/v20/970-79/979/miss.htm

Crazy stuff. Definitely looks like the police did it. Also looks like he wasn't the first one, either.
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Old 12-06-2004, 02:34 PM   #7
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The episode aired today. So sad.

My grandfather was a police chief. One time he told me that the police will always look out for each other, no matter what. Seems that's what is going on with this case.
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Old 12-09-2004, 03:14 PM   #8
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Default Andre Jones

Yep, I agree with everyone. He was most likely murdered while in police custody.

One detail which I rember from this case has always troubled me. The boy's father was a minister, if I remember correctly was a minister in the Nation of Islam. Is it possible his parents involvement in this orgainization had anything to do with his death? A revenge motive maybe?

Any thoughts on this are welcomed.

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Old 04-12-2006, 05:35 PM   #9
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I thought I'd bump this up as I did find a blurb about it. I was always curious what came of the investigation that Attorney General Janet Reno ordered on all the suspicious deaths. Does anyone know? Apparently Andre's parents won a substantial settlement:

In February of 1996, Lumumba announced that he would pursue lawsuits on behalf of Charles and Esther Quinn. A few days after the Quinns’ son Andre Jones had been arrested in August of 1992, he was found hanged in a shower stall in the Simpson County jail. The case attracted national attention for three reasons: first because he was one of the last of forty-eight jailhouse hangings of young African American men in Mississippi since 1987; second, because an independent autopsy ruled the death a homicide after state’s pathologist had called it a suicide; and finally, because the hanging happened under the supervision of Simpson County Sheriff Lloyd “Goon” Jones. Jones had become infamous after being accused in the deaths of two foreign journalists covering the landmark racial integration admission of James Meredith to the University of Mississippi in 1962. Jones was later implicated in the murders of two Jackson State University students in 1972. Lumumba won substantial damages for the Quinn family.
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Old 04-12-2006, 06:22 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crystaldawn
I thought I'd bump this up as I did find a blurb about it. I was always curious what came of the investigation that Attorney General Janet Reno ordered on all the suspicious deaths. Does anyone know? Apparently Andre's parents won a substantial settlement.

I've never seen this case on UM, but from the limited amount of things I've seen, it sounds like his parents DESERVED a substantial award. This case reminds of me of the Jayson Artis case.

The things that happen in jail/prison scare me.
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Old 05-25-2008, 06:52 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crystaldawn
I thought I'd bump this up as I did find a blurb about it. I was always curious what came of the investigation that Attorney General Janet Reno ordered on all the suspicious deaths. Does anyone know? Apparently Andre's parents won a substantial settlement:

In February of 1996, Lumumba announced that he would pursue lawsuits on behalf of Charles and Esther Quinn. A few days after the Quinns’ son Andre Jones had been arrested in August of 1992, he was found hanged in a shower stall in the Simpson County jail. The case attracted national attention for three reasons: first because he was one of the last of forty-eight jailhouse hangings of young African American men in Mississippi since 1987; second, because an independent autopsy ruled the death a homicide after state’s pathologist had called it a suicide; and finally, because the hanging happened under the supervision of Simpson County Sheriff Lloyd “Goon” Jones. Jones had become infamous after being accused in the deaths of two foreign journalists covering the landmark racial integration admission of James Meredith to the University of Mississippi in 1962. Jones was later implicated in the murders of two Jackson State University students in 1972. Lumumba won substantial damages for the Quinn family.

The govt. ruled that nothing suspicious happened. Of course.
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Old 12-21-2011, 11:00 AM   #12
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IMHO, this was nothing more than a suicide. I'll try to break down the segment piece by piece and give my reasons as to why I think Andre did in fact kill himself.

First, let me start off by saying some cops, not all, lie. There's corruption everywhere in this country, not just in law enforcement. That being said, the first thing that struck me about this case was the fact that they were referring to the "mysterious" hangings that were going on in jails in Mississippi around the same time that Andre was found dead. Half were black, half were white. So right off the bat, I don't see where the argument for racism can exist. I know there are prejudiced cops, some even racist, but again it's an ugly thing that exists everywhere. Now on to the actual case itself.

Andre and his girlfriend, Tanisha, are shown in the re-enactment as pulling up to a routine sobriety checkpoint area. It's acknowledged that Andre is driving a friend's car, which also happened to be stolen, and he is also driving without a license. His parents, his girlfriend, and the police are all in agreement that he did not have his license on him and that the truck he was driving (for over a week) was stolen. Andre may or may not have known if this was stolen, and I think it's a moot point. Police also said in addition to driving the stolen vehicle, Andre stopped short of the checkpoint and tossed a .38 caliber pistol out the window. They also said inside the cab of the truck was an open container of alcohol. Tanisha flat out denies the fact that there was beer or the gun ever in the truck. So who are we to believe? Or in other words, who would have a bigger motive to lie...Tanisha or the police? Let's see, the cops already had him for driving without a license AND driving a stolen vehicle. We have to remember that this was a routine DUI checkpoint. This wasn't some case where someone was pulled over for speeding which spiraled out of control. We also have to remember that the cops did not know Andre from Adam. What else are they supposed to think when Andre says it's not his car, and that he had no idea it was stolen? If you pull over a car that is reported stolen, the driver INSTANTLY becomes your number one suspect. So of course they would have arrested Andre right there on the spot. But, why feel the need to lie about the gun and the beer? They already had a pretty substantial charge against him with the stolen vehicle, why randomly out of the blue just say, "Ahh...let's say he threw a gun out the window and had a beer just for kicks." It makes no sense to me as to why they would feel the need to lie about the gun, especially since there was a passenger in the truck that could verify that it didn't exist. Now Tanisha on the other hand was an occupant in a stolen vehicle, and (according to police) was driving in a vehicle with an open container. I'm not sure about Mississippi, but I know in some states passengers can get charged with DUIs (DUI by consent is the charge), and if there was evidence of drinking, maybe Tanisha feared being charged for one, if not all of these charges Andre was facing. For that reason alone she would have a motive to lie. Or perhaps she wanted to protect Andre, and uphold his wholesome image, who knows? Tanisha acknowledges that the truck was stolen but she didn't know it, yet we have no way to verify if this is true or not. IMO, the same goes for the gun and the beer. We have Tanisha's word to go on that this was a fabrication by the police. And I think it's safe to say that Tanisha isn't exactly an impartial witness, being that Andre was her boyfriend. Tanisha's credibility gets weaker as her story goes on about what the cops did after Andre told them his name.

According to Tanisha, a cop asked Andre his name and after he told him, the cop got together with other cops and they all huddled up together "like a football huddle". Then the cop came back over and asked Andre again if he had his license and he said, "NO" which is when he was asked to get out of the car and put in handcuffs. Doesn't that sound like a routine thing police officers do when pulling over someone without a license? The "huddle" could have been nothing more than the cops getting together going over what was going on with Andre getting a "vote" so to speak on how they should proceed. The implication from the UM segment is that the cop "recognized" Andre Jones' name as the son of a prominent member of the local NAACP, and being the racists they are, decided to arrest him and make up charges against him. I have numerous problems with this. First, isn't Jones a common name? Also, what are the odds this beat cop would even know who Andre's mother was based off of name alone? That just makes absolutely no sense to me. Isn't it more realistic that the other cops were running the tags of the truck, found the name of the person the truck was registered to, and (since Andre didn't have his license) when Andre told them his name they knew he wasn't the one supposed to be driving it which is why he was handcuffed? I also think that Tanisha's account of what happened (at least according to what was shown on her UM interview) is pretty accurate and probably did unfold the way she said it did. How do the beer and gun fit into this scenario? This is where I think the UM re-enactment is a bit misleading. In the "police version" shown on UM, Andre tosses the gun out the window mere feet away from the officers at the checkpoint. Then they approach him, find the beer, then the gun, and then they arrest him. I don't think this is very accurate, and doubt anything would have happened that rapidly like it was shown in the re-enactment. I think the officers asked for his license, and then told him to pull to the side of the road. This may have been when Andre tossed the gun out of the window, or he very well could have tossed it several yards before the checkpoint but police figured it was an empty beer can or litter and decided not to pursue the matter until they talked to him. I think the "huddle" was the officers discussing the car being reported stolen and that Andre was saying he did not have a license. I think this was when the officer approached and gave him one more chance to show an ID, and when he said he didn't have one again this is when the officer cuffed him. Which is very standard procedure. I then think the officers asked him what he threw out the window, he denied throwing anything which is why they went back and searched the general area and found the gun. I also think they saw an empty beer can (it could have been something lying on the floor or in the bed of the truck unknown to both Tanisha and Andre) somewhere in the truck which is why they tacked on the "open container" charge. Or they very well could have been drinking beer in the truck at the time, we'll never know. Either way, I do not see the police just making something up for no apparent reason. There's no evidence that these officers were prejudiced, or hounding Andre, or even falsely arresting Andre. Even in Tanisha's version of events the officers comply with routine procedures, and there was no evidence of any wrong doing on the officers part. If these cops were out to "get" Andre for some nefarious reason, why would they put in their report how "amazed" they were at how cooperative Andre was. Does that sound like a setup to you? The police arrest a man driving a stolen truck without a license who's being very cooperative with them and for some unknown reason they decide to make up the fact that he tossed a gun out of a window and that he was drinking and driving? So again I'll ask, who has the bigger motive to lie at this point? The police or Tanisha?

...TO BE CONTINUED...
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Old 12-21-2011, 01:14 PM   #13
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Please, he was murdered, or as they say it, lynched because he was black. His case is what I like to call one of the "three racial murders", the other two being Keith Warren and Jayson Artis. I believe he was beaten and hung to make it look like a suicide when in fact he was murdered.
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Old 12-21-2011, 05:57 PM   #14
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...CONTINUED...

Next I'd like to touch upon the phone call Andre placed to his mother from the jail he was taken too. He called his mother several times over the course of the day, and was transferred to the county jail. Each time he talked to his mother he said he didn't know what he was being charged with. Now from the parents perspective I can see why they would initially think this was a misunderstanding. They had no idea that the truck Andre was driving was stolen and since Andre himself was saying he had no idea why he was arrested in the first place, they had every right to be upset with police. However, finding out after the fact that the car was stolen should have put things into better perspective, IMO. We have an 18 year old, who's supposed to start college in a day, who's just been arrested for carrying a concealed weapon and driving a stolen truck. I think that Andre was simply embarassed about everything which is why he told his mother he didn't know what he was being charged with. If his parents held this image of Andre as a straight laced college bound decent guy who had a bright future ahead of him, who wouldn't be embarassed by the tarnishing of that image? And if in fact there was no gun, wouldn't Andre have been adamant with his mother on the phone that he was being wrongfully charged? And if there was no gun, why wouldn't Andre just come clean over the phone with his mother and tell her the car he borrowed was stolen? His parents knew he borrowed the car from a friend, so it's not like they would have thought he was the one that stole it or anything. The fact that he denied knowing anything on the phone tells me there was something he didn't want his parents to know about, and I think it was the gun personally. He had to have been told something he was being charged with. The police just don't pull you over and arrest you without telling you why.

At the jail, Andre is alleged to have told police that he was in a gang and voluntarily posed for pictures displaying gang signs to the police. Again, the officers were "impressed" with how cooperative he was being. I see no reason in the world why the police would make this up. Again, why flat out lie about Andre admitting to being in a gang (I suppose to taint his character) to then do a 180 and compliment him by saying how impressed they were about how cooperative he was? Does that honestly sound like a setup? I think the parents were a bit naive into believing that Andre would never join a gang. He obviously associated with unsavory characters or else he wouldn't have been driving around a stolen truck he borrowed from a friend. While Andre may not have been in a gang, is it really that much of a stretch to say he at least associated with these people?

According to Andre's stepfather, an inmate who was transferred to the county jail with Andre said that the transferring officer made several racial remarks in an attempt to intimidate Andre. This very well may be true, and even if it is true it doesn't bolster the murder theory by much, IMO. Just because one dumbass ignorant cop made some racist comments does not mean there was a grand murder plot all along. And there's also the possibility that the inmate is lying. How much stock can we put into the word of an inmate who already has animosity towards police?

When Andre was taken to the county jail, he was taken to an "L" shaped holding cell with 12 other inmates. This is where Andre is alleged to have hung himself in the shower in this holding cell with his shoelace. His stepfather visited the cell and said that it was approximately eight feet in the air and that Andre would have needed to have "help" to hang himself. The pathologist disputes this and says that it was demonstrated before him that it was easily accomplished. Being that the pathologist is a trained expert, who witnessed someone recreate what Andre did "easily", I'll have to believe him. The parents also contended the fact that a shoelace would not have been able to sustain Andre's body weight. But the pathologist did in fact determine that the lace's "tensile strength" was strong enough to support Andre. There's also a reason why nowadays police make inmates remove their belts and shoes...because people have been known to hang themselves with these materials before. It's really not that uncommon as people would initially think. Andre's parents were unhappy with the autopsy report so they went out and hired an independent pathologist who determined that Andre was murdered. This is where it turns into a he said/he said argument between the pathologists. The independent pathologist made notes of bruising that the original pathologist did not note in his initial report. The independent pathologist also said the ligature marks on Andre's death indicated he was strangled. The original pathologist disputes this and says it was consistent with a hanging. So who are we to believe here? For one, the independent pathologist was hired by Andre's parents. If you can think back to every UM case that involved a family who went out and hired an independent pathologist to reinvestigate their loved ones death, has there ever been a time where they ruled in agreement with the original autopsy? No. Because they're hired by the family to find things consistent with their (the family's) beliefs. It's that simple. Not to mention the fact that the state medical examiner was appointed to look into Andre's death (and several other inmates who died in jail under "mysterious" circumstances) and she concluded: "I think that it’s extremely unlikely that any of these deaths are anything other than suicide. All the deaths have been investigated by not just one agency but one or two or sometimes three." We have not one, but two investigations into Andre's death which both conclude suicide. And the original pathologist also says that Andre's case was reviewed by several other agencies (Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, Dept of Justice, US Attorney's office, FBI, Attorney General of Mississippi) all agreed that his death was a suicide. As a matter of fact, the Justice Dept opened an investigation into the treatment of inmates in Mississippi jails and other than some "unsanitary conditions", they found no evidence that the hanging deaths were anything other than suicides.

I really can't give you a reason as to why Andre would have decided to end his life right then and there. I can only speculate. He was an 18 year old who was supposed to start college in a day, who was probably going to be in severe legal trouble and looked to be facing years in behind bars. Perhaps he thought his future ambitions were going to be swept away from him (college, career, family, etc.), or feared facing a long jail term sentence. Or maybe he knew he was in one of the roughest prisons in Mississippi, knew he was a "fish out of water", so maybe he was afraid of confrontations with the other inmates? Especially if they knew he was being very cooperative with police. Who knows? I think the embarassment of having to face his family after coming forward and admitting to being in a gang may have been another factor. The evidence for murder, IMO, just isn't there. Andre was in a cell with 12 other people. Out of the 12, only one comes forward and says Andre was taken out and brought back in a wheel chair? Why would the other inmates look on as Andre was being propped up to make his death look like a "suicide"? And why wouldn't they have came forward by now? Does the Mississippi prison system only hire violent sadists as their guards/police officers? For us to believe Andre was murdered, we must believe that he had the misfortune of pulling up on a DUI checkpoint, which was being administered by a goup of racist officers who conspired to arrest Andre on trumped up charges simply because they wanted to "lynch" him because his mother was a high ranking official in the local NAACP and/or because he stole a "white man's truck". We must also believe that all of the officers present at the scene sat back and agreed to partake in this little plan witout any dissension. Then, these officers also convinced the OTHER officers/guards at the county jail (40 miles away) that Andre Jones stole a white man's truck, so he must die. The guards at the county jail had no problem doing the other officers bidding, so since they too were violent racist sadists, decided to lynch him and make it look like a suicide. That's asking for a lot to be believed if you ask me. It's interesting how the UM segment makes it seem like the officers at the checkpoint targeted Andre (who then conspired to do harm to him because of the stolen truck), but then gloss over the fact that he was taken 40 miles away from the arresting officer/s to another location altogether. And geez, what luck for Andre Jones to have been transferred to the most racist prison in the state of Mississippi, filled to the rim with racist prison guards who have no problem lynching prisoners who stole a "white man's truck". For us to believe Andre Jones was murdered, we must be able to provide an answer to this question: why would the police/prison guards, other inmates, and the bureaucracy of the State of Mississippi have any reason in the world to do harm to Andre Jones, and then form some massive "pact" and keep it silenced/covered up for over twenty years? And that is what is the clincher for me. Who, out of everyone shown in the UM segment, had the biggest motive to take Andre Jones' life? Himself.

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Old 05-14-2012, 07:33 PM   #15
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An interesting breakdown; thanks for sharing your thoughts TheCars1986.
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