Richard Jewell

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Richard Allensworth Jewell (born Richard White; December 17, 1962 – August 29, 2007) was an American police officer and security guard. He was born in Danville, Georgia.

He was known for working as a security guard for AT&T during the Centennial Olympic Park bombing at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia.[1] He found a backpack filled with three pipe bombs on the park grounds, Jewell called the police and helped to evacuate the area before the bomb exploded, saving many people from injury or death.

After the bombing, Jewell was seen as a hero but later he was viewed as a suspect, before being cleared. Jewell's case is considered an example of the damage that can be done by media reporting based on unreliable or incomplete information.[2]

Despite never being charged, the media continued to criticize Jewell and calling him the suspected bomber. Jewell was eventually found not guilty, and Eric Rudolph was later found to have been the bomber.[3][4]

In 2006, Governor Sonny Perdue publicly thanked Jewell on behalf of the State of Georgia for saving the lives of those at the Olympics.

Jewell died on August 29, 2007 of heart failure caused by diabetes in Woodbury, Georgia at age 44.

In 2019, Clint Eastwood directed a movie about him titled Richard Jewell.

References[change | change source]

  1. "The Ballad of Richard Jewell". Vanity Fair. February 1, 1997. Retrieved July 22, 2016.
  2. Weber, Harry R. (August 30, 2007). "Former Olympic Park Guard Jewell Dies". Associated Press in The Washington Post. Security guard Richard Jewell was initially hailed as a hero for spotting a suspicious backpack and moving people out of harm's way just before a bomb exploded, killing one and injuring 111 others. But within days, he was named as a suspect in the blast.
  3. "Anthrax Investigation (online chat with Marilyn Thompson, Assistant Managing Editor, Investigative)". Washington Post. July 3, 2003.
  4. National Journal Global Security Newswire (August 13, 2002). "Anthrax: FBI Denies Smearing Former US Army Biologist". Archived from the original on April 19, 2005. Retrieved September 28, 2006.

Other websites[change | change source]