Even in death, families say, black men face bias

October 16, 2017 | Samantha Melamed | Philadelphia Daily News

It is closing in on a year since Thomas Vaughan, 73, watched his grandson Zion step out the front door of his Yeadon home for the last time. Zion, a popular Penn Wood High School senior and a linebacker on the school’s football team, was killed less than a block from his home by a single gunshot to his back.At the time, police told reporters there was no apparent motive. They still have not arrested a suspect.

Yet when Vaughan applied to the state Victims Compensation Assistance Program for the $6,500 in funeral expenses available for homicide victims, the application was rejected. The reason: His grandson, who had no criminal record, had been involved in an illegal activity that caused his murder.

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