An explosive new book by Timothy B. Tyson called "The Blood of Emmett Till" came out previous year and alleges that Carolyn Donham, the white woman at the center of the case, admitted to lying about the events leading up to the murder. The official wasn't authorized to discuss the matter publicly and spoke to AP on condition of anonymity.
The reopening of the Till case was disclosed in a federal report sent to lawmakers in March that said the Justice Department had received unspecified "new information". "Only the powers that be know if there's anything", Parker told ABC7 Eyewitness News Thursday.
The federal case regarding Till was closed in 2007 after the Justice Department had earlier concluded it could no longer prosecute the case and referred it to the district attorney in Mississippi.
TYSON: I think that it's a cynical political charade and utter hypocrisy for the Justice Department of Jeff Beauregard Sessions and Donald Trump to feign caring about a black child murdered in 1955 when they're holding children of color in cages, when they can't find a moral distinction between the Nazis and those who demonstrate against them, when Jeff Sessions has spent his whole career supporting restrictions on voting rights. The DOJ would not say what that information is and no new charges in connection with the investigation have been filed. Despite the fact that white men J.W. Milam and Roy Bryant later admitted to ruthlessly killing Till in a Look magazine meet after they were cleared by an all-white jury. Both are now dead.
According to the Associated Press, Carolyn Bryant - who will turn 84 years old this month and goes by Carolyn Donham - lives in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Abducted from the home where he was staying, Till was beaten and shot, and his body was found weighted down with a cotton gin fan in a river.
Emmett's mother, Mamie Till-Mobley, was horrified to see the state of her son's body when it was returned to her.
During the trial of Roy Bryant and Milam, Carolyn Bryant was brought as a potential witness for the defense. Deliberations barely took an hour, and one juror claimed the acquittal could've come sooner had they not stopped to have a soda.
"He said, 'How about a date, baby?'" she testified, according to a trial transcript released by the Federal Bureau of Investigation a decade ago. In a book published by historian Timothy B. Tyson, Bryant said she's fuzzy on the details.
After delivering her testimony, Judge Curtis Swango ruled that it was inadmissible. The two men have since died, in 1994 and 1981, respectively.
The Duke University scholar says he shared materials including recordings of 2008 interviews with a white woman, Carolyn Donham, acknowledging that she wasn't truthful when she testified that Till made sexual advances at a MS store in 1955.
"Nothing that boy did could ever justify what happened to him", she said. Nobody - to me, the fact that Carolyn Bryant lied in court is not the morning news.