Air Date: Weds. November 04, 2009
Time:9 PM C/10 PM E/7 PM P
Call-in Number: 646-652-4593
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Topic: Never Too Late For Justice: Heating Up The Civil Rights Cold Case Files...
Bebeto Matthews / AP
About Bro. Keith Beauchamp
Keith Beauchamp attended Southern University in Baton Rouge where he studied Criminal Justice with the intention of becoming a Civil Rights Attorney. As a young boy in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Beauchamp had his share of run-ins with racism but it wasn’t until an incident where he was assaulted by an undercover police officer after dancing with a white woman at a party that he felt compelled to leave college to come to New York. It was here he could pursue his dream of being a filmmaker. And through this feat, he’d attempt to remedy some of the past and present injustices of the Southern mindset.
In the fall of 1997, Beauchamp relocated from Baton Rouge, Louisiana to New York. He quickly found work at Big Baby Films, a company founded by childhood friends that focused on music video production. He honed his behind-the-camera skills during the day and spent his evenings doing research and reaching out to anyone who might have information on the Emmett Till case, a story told to Beauchamp when he was just ten years old. It was at this young age that Beauchamp saw a Jet magazine that contained a picture of Emmett Till’s dead body and was told the story behind Till’s murder.
In 1999, Beauchamp founded Till Freedom Come Productions, a company devoted to socially significant projects that can both teach and entertain. Beauchamp has devoted the past eleven years of his life to pursuing justice for Emmett Till, traveling extensively between New York, Chicago, and Mississippi investigating the murder. Through his journey he tracked and spoke with witnesses who had never before spoken about the case, befriended Mamie Till Mobley who took Beauchamp under her wing, worked with such influential figures as Muhammad Ali and Reverend Al Sharpton, all the while persistently lobbying both the State of Mississippi and the Federal Government to reopen the Emmett Till murder investigation.
On May 10th, 2004, the United States Department of Justice reopened this 51 year-old murder case citing Beauchamp’s documentary The Untold Story of Emmett Louis Till as both a major factor in their decision and the starting point for their investigation. In May of 2005, Emmett’s body was exhumed and most recently, the FBI turned over their evidence to the appropriate District Attorney in Mississippi.
Beauchamp’s newest project is the television documentary series Murder in Black and White, hosted by Reverend Al Sharpton. A collaboration between Beauchamp’s Till Freedom Come Productions and the FBIs Cold Case Unit, it reveals the FBIs attempt to bring justice to unsolved civil rights cold cases of the 1940s and 50s. The compelling series draws first-hand information from eyewitnesses, FBI case agents as well as the people who knew the victims -- their children, siblings, family members and friends, most of whom have yet to speak publicly.
Beauchamp has been featured on 60 Minutes, ABC World New Tonight, Court TV, MSNBC, CNN, and BBC, as well as in hundreds of publications around the world including The New York Times, The Washington Post, USA Today, Associated Press, and The Chicago Sun Times.
Beauchamp’s current projects in connection with the Emmett Till case include the documentary The Untold Story of Emmett Louis Till, and a feature film that he is producing with Frederick Zollo (Mississippi Burning, Ghosts of Mississippi, Quiz Show) based on Beauchamp’s eleven year journey in connection with this case. He is a frequent lecturer at colleges and universities around the country.
Visit The Untold Story Of Emmett Till
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