Kelly Wood, the daughter of former New York Police Department Officer, Ray Wood, has publicly stated the letter her father allegedly wrote before his death is fake. Circulating throughout the past week, the letter claims that the New York Police Department intentionally played a role in the death of civil rights leader Malcolm X. The letter entered headlines after it was read aloud by her cousin, Reggie Wood, and shared with the family of Malcolm X.
“I know that my father did not write this letter,” Kelly Wood told reporters.
“I know that is not his signature and I know the envelope they're using to somehow justify that the letter was mailed is also a fake."
Specifically, the letter claims that the former New York Police Department officer infiltrated Malcolm X's security team. On the day that the civil rights leader was assassinated, Wood allegedly drew his security away from the Audobon Ballroom before they were later arrested. Not long afterward, armed men flooded the ballroom and shot Malcolm X to death in front of his family.
"I participated in actions that in hindsight were deplorable and detrimental to the advancement of my own Black people," Ray Wood allegedly wrote before his death.
"My actions on behalf of the New York City Police Department were done under duress and fear."
Given the severity of what was shared in the letter, many speculated that he held off from revealing his work until his death because he was in fear of retribution. However, his daughter disputes that claim.
“My father is not a coward. He would have never, ever asked anyone to speak on his behalf after his passing. If he had something to say, he would have said it when he was alive,” she said.
Despite her statements, the NYPD and the family of Malcolm X remain committed to pursuing this letter. Recently, attorney Ben Crump told the Black Information Network that the family of Malcolm X may pursue further legal action. Additionally, the NYPD have publicly stated that they take this matter seriously and will provide any information that may be helpful.
"Several months ago, the Manhattan District Attorney initiated a review of the investigation and prosecution that resulted in two convictions for the murder of Malcolm X. The NYPD has provided all available records relevant to that case to the District Attorney. The Department remains committed to assist with that review in any way,” the NYPD stated.
"Any evidence that provides greater insight into the truth behind that terrible tragedy should be thoroughly investigated,” Malcolm X's daughter, Ilyasah Shabazz, added.
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