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Documentary On Hanging Death Of NC Teen To Screen At Sundance Film Festival

Lennon Lacy, Bladenboro, NC NAACP, Hanging
Leoneda Inge
File photo of Claudia Lacy, the mother of Lennon Lacy, the black teen found hanging in Bladenboro, N.C. His death is featured in the film, "Always in Season."

The tragic story of a black teenager from North Carolina will be featured during this year’s Sundance Film Festival in Utah. It's called “Always in Season.”

Lennon Lacy was discovered hanging from a swing set in the Town of Bladenboro, in Bladen County in 2014. A belt was tied around his neck.

“I have a man hanging from a swing set, Bladen Rental Properties, Highway 211. I am going to throw up. Oh God!” said a caller in a the 911 recording. Lacy was 17.

Lacy's mother Claudia Lacy has never believed her son committed suicide. She says he was murdered, lynched.

“With the things that they said happened and went on, that’s not real, it’s not true. I asked them to prove it to me, show me the evidence that determined the case is what you say it is," said Claudia Lacy. "And to this day, they haven’t done it. I asked them to reenact it, they didn’t.”

A few months after Lennon Lacy’s death, the Rev. William Barber led a rally in support of a complete police investigation.

“We want you to hear his name, in your sleep! While you’re driving! Lennon Lacy! Lennon Lacy!" Barber said.

The film, “Always in Season,” was directed and produced by Jacqueline Olive. It connects the racial terror of lynchings that took place in the early 20th century to the racial violence of today.

Claudia Lacy says she is glad the world will finally learn about the death or her son.

“How does it make me feel? It’s time. It’s high time. It’s been overdue,” said Claudia Lacy.

“Always in Season” will be shown this weekend and several times next week at Sundance in Park City, Utah. Claudia Lacy will be there.

Leoneda Inge is the co-host of WUNC's "Due South." Leoneda has been a radio journalist for more than 30 years, spending most of her career at WUNC as the Race and Southern Culture reporter. Leoneda’s work includes stories of race, slavery, memory and monuments. She has won "Gracie" awards, an Alfred I. duPont Award and several awards from the Radio, Television, Digital News Association (RTDNA). In 2017, Leoneda was named "Journalist of Distinction" by the National Association of Black Journalists.
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