Mississippi Goddam: The Ballad of Billey Joe

Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting and PRX

Reveal host Al Letson makes good on a promise to find out what really happened to Billey Joe Johnson Jr., a Black high schooler whose dreams of going to college and playing pro football ended when he died during a 2008 traffic stop. Authorities said he died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound during the confrontation with a white sheriff’s deputy, but the boy’s family always had doubts.


Network/Station/Platform:  ~580 public radio stations nationwide, and on the Reveal podcast, distributed by PRX. Host:  Al Letson. Lead Reporters/Producers:  Al Letson & Jonathan Jones. Series Editor and Executive Producer:  Kevin Sullivan. Series Producer:  Michael I Schiller. Production Manager:  Amy Mostafa. Production Assistant:  Steven Rascón. Reporting and Production Assistance:  Ko Bragg, Melissa Lewis, Katharine Mieszkowski, Michael Montgomery, Laurel Hennen Vigil. Voice Work:  Alexis Hightower. Legal:  D. Victoria Baranetsky. Additional Editing:  Sumi Aggarwal, Jen Chien, Nina Martin, Andy Donohue. Fact Checkers:  Rosemarie Ho, Nikki Frick. Photography:  Imani Khayyam. Design and Technical Staff:  Sarah Mirk, Joan Wong. Sound Design, Engineering, Composing:  Jim Briggs III, Fernando Arruda. Additional Mixing and Sound Design:  Claire Mullen, Najib Aminy, Brett Simpson, Ameeta Ganatra, Kathryn Styer Martinez.