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Mississippi fraternity suspends 3 over ‘unacceptable’ photo

 A photograph of three University of Mississippi students posing with guns beside a bullet-pocked and oft-vandalized historic marker to lynching victim Emmett Till, whose grave marker is pictured, has sparked a possible federal investigation and suspensions of the three by their fraternity.
A photograph of three University of Mississippi students posing with guns beside a bullet-pocked and oft-vandalized historic marker to lynching victim Emmett Till, whose grave marker is pictured, has sparked a possible federal investigation and suspensions of the three by their fraternity.Robert A. Davis/Chicago Sun-Times via Associated Press/File/Chicago Sun-Times via AP

Three students at the University of Mississippi were suspended by their fraternity on Wednesday after an Instagram photo surfaced of them brandishing guns in front of a bullet-riddled memorial sign for Emmett Till, whose brutal murder in 1955 served as a catalyst for the civil rights movement.

The photo of the smiling Kappa Alpha members was the subject of a bias complaint filed with the university in March, according to Rod Guajardo, a spokesman for the university. He said he did not have a copy of the complaint and was unsure if it was a public record.

Guajardo said in an email on Thursday that the photo was referred to campus police and the FBI, which declined to investigate the matter further because it did not pose a specific threat. The university said it took no disciplinary action because the students did not violate the school’s code of conduct.

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But the school’s chapter of Kappa Alpha, which the three students are members of, said in a statement on Thursday that it took swift action after it learned of the photo.

new york times