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Two weeks after the Walker murder, on March 11, 1964, two cars filled with white men attempted to run Butler and his wife, Money, off the Pretty Creek Bridge as they drove home from a local store in Kingston, about fifteen miles north of where Walker had been murdered.The Mississippi Highway and Safety Patrol, which was investigating the Walker murder, interviewed Butler about the incident near the bridge.
The Emmett Till Unsolved Civil Rights Crime Act of 2007, a groundbreaking bill sponsored by civil rights hero and Congressman John Lewis, directed the FBI to conduct a “timely and thorough” investigation of Walker’s murder and 109 other unsolved civil rights cold cases.Three hundred yards later, the attackers stopped his car, most likely by roadblock or ruse, and gathered around with shotguns. All of the windows were shot out, multiple bullet holes were observed in at least one door, and part of the steering wheel was blasted off.The Walker case is just one among thousands of violent, racially motivated acts from the civil rights era that remain unsolved.Whether Butler exposed himself to further violence by talking to investigators is unclear, but he soon faced a white mob himself. As on other Sunday mornings, he was working as a farmhand for a white couple, Louisa and Hayward Benton Drane.
As he got to work in their barn, he found he was looking down the barrels of shotguns wielded by hooded men.
A Mississippi Highway and Safety Patrol investigator had identified two possible suspects for the District Attorney to arrest.