The body of Alonzo Brooks, a 23-year-old Black man who died under mysterious circumstances in 2004, has been exhumed, authorities said. “I can confirm the body was exhumed today as part of the Brooks investigation,” Jim Cross, a U.S. Attorney’s Office spokesperson, told PEOPLE.
“We are looking at this as a suspicious death,” FBI spokesperson Bridget B. Patton told the outlet.
In 2004, Brooks attended a party with some friends in the outskirts of a rural Kansas town. Out of 100 people, he was one of three Black men who attended the event. He reportedly got into a verbal altercation with some people at the party. His friends left the gathering before he did and Brooks did not have a ride home. He never made it home that night.
The next day, he was reported missing. A month later, his friends and family found his body on top of a pile of branches near a creek. An autopsy could not determine his cause of death, but his friends and family believe he was a victim of foul play due to his race.
“Likely multiple people know what happened that night in April 2004,” U.S. Attorney Stephen McAllister said in a statement last month. “It is past time for the truth to come out. The code of silence must be broken. Alonzo’s family deserves to know the truth and it is time for justice to be served.”
“There are many unanswered questions that surround Alonzo’s death,” FBI Special Agent in Charge Timothy Langan said. “Someone knows something and we are hopeful that with the passage of time and this significant reward this renewed effort will produce results and provide closure for the Brooks family.”
Brooks’ mysterious death was recently highlighted on an episode of Netflix’s “Unsolved Mysteries” reboot. Since the episode aired, authorities have received several credible tips. The FBI is now offering an $100,000 reward for anyone who has any information on Brooks’ death.