The former boss of a Mississippi man who was found dead under suspicious circumstances last year said he had nothing to do with his death.
Luke Clements told NewsNationNow that his family is in hiding due to repeated threats regarding Rasheem Carter’s death. Clements said he also wants to know what happened to Carter, 25, but he had no involvement in his death.
“I want to help any way we can. We have made every effort to address any of these accusations that have been made. It’s just unfortunate. It’s been a rough time,” he told the news outlet.
Carter’s skeletal remains were found in a wooded area on a property in Taylorsville on November 2, a month after he vanished from a Super 9 motel in Laurel.
According to reports, Carter was a welder and was completing a contracting gig in Taylorsville, 100 miles from home. Carter’s mother said the short-term job ended when he and the business owner got into an argument at the worksite which led Carter to fear for his life.
At some point, Carter allegedly texted his mother about “not seeing eye to eye” with the business owner — who Carter also said “would be responsible” if something happened to him. The family also claimed that Carter had called the police around the time he called his mother about white men in three trucks following him.
Family attorney Ben Crump has alleged that Carter’s head was disconnected from his body — with the State Crime Lab giving the family a box containing his head and spinal cord. Carter’s family also claimed that some of his front teeth were missing, suggesting an assault had occurred.
Trail camera photos apparently show Carter shirtless in the woods on the day he vanished. Detectives reportedly showed Carter’s family the image a week before his body was found last year. The images do not show anyone other than Carter, authorities said.
While Crump said Carter’s remains were found in different locations, officials attributed it to animals.
Mother Jones reported that Carter’s family worked with a private investigator who determined that Carter’s severed, decomposing penis was in his mouth and that his bones were broken and cut cleanly in a manner inconsistent with an animal attack. The investigator also alleged that police bungled the investigation and failed to take Carter’s disappearance seriously.
Earlier this month, the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation said that they cannot determine Carter’s cause of death. The Smith County Sheriff’s Department sought help from the MBI, who reportedly conducted interviews, and surveyed the area where Carter’s remains were discovered. The department also fielded tips to gain more information about Carter’s last known whereabouts.
Smith County police reached out to MBI in November. However, a day after Carter’s remains were discovered, Smith County police publicly announced that it has no reason to believe foul play is involved in Carter’s death.
Despite this, the MBI recently said they and Smith County police are still investigating this case.
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[Featured image: Rasheem Carter/Handout]