Attorney in boy's hanging in Logan County wants probe reopened

March 22, 2013

COLUMBUS - The family lawyer for a black teenager who died in a 2006 hanging incident at an Ohio church camp has asked the local sheriff to reopen the investigation after another camper invoked the Fifth Amendment during questioning last week.

Attorney Cliff Arnebeck made the request of Logan County Sheriff Andrew Smith on Friday. He says the witness's request for protection against self-incrimination raises new questions about the death of James McCoy III.

McCoy was found hanging from a tree at a Christian camp near Bellefontaine where his Columbus-area church was on retreat in April 2006. It was his 18th birthday. A lawsuit alleges it was asphyxiation prank akin to a lynching. A coroner ruled it suicide.

A message was left Friday with the camper's lawyer.