BLADEN COUNTY, NC (WECT) - District Attorney Jon David has issued a response to the decision by the US Attorney's Office to closes its investigation into the death of Bladenboro teen Lennon Lacy.
"I have thoroughly reviewed all reports from the [Bladenboro Police Department], the SBI, and the FBI and I concur with the findings by the U.S. Attorney's Office that there is no evidence to suggest that Lacy died as a result of a homicide," David explained. "All the credible evidence suggest that Lacy died as a result of a suicide."
The 17-year-old was found hanging by his neck from a swing set in a Bladenboro mobile home park on the morning of August 29, 2014.
The Bladenboro Police Department and the SBI initially investigated Lacy's death to determine the manner of death and whether criminal charges were warranted.
David said in an effort to be thorough, he requested his federal partners at the FBI and the US Attorney's Office to help review the matter after the initial investigation concluded.
"The FBI declined to open up a formal investigation and instead agreed to conduct an assessment," David said. "The assessment involved reviewing the entire SBI file (which included the BPD file) and conducting follow-up interviews where appropriate."
The FBI then forwarded its assessment to David's office and the US Attorney's office for review.
On Thursday, the US Attorney's Office issued a news release saying there was no evidence to suggest Lacy's death was a homicide and that the investigation was closed.
David also stood by the initial law enforcement investigation after some criticized it for being lackluster amid speculation that Lacy was the victim of a hate-based crime.
"In my analysis, this is simply untrue," David explained. "The FBI assessment has confirmed my initial opinion that the investigation conducted by the [SBI] and the [BPD] was complete, thorough, and professional."