Nationally renowned civil rights attorney Ben Crump and co-counsels Ray Hamlin and Paul Napoli held a news conference on Saturday, Feb. 20 where Reggie Wood (relative of Ray Wood) revealed evidence of a conspiracy perpetrated by the NYPD and the FBI to assassinate civil rights activist/icon Malcolm X in February 1965 in Harlem, New York. 

Ray Wood, an undercover police officer at the time, confessed in a deathbed declaration letter that the NYPD and the FBI conspired to undermine the legitimacy of the Civil Rights Movement and its leaders. 

Without any training, Wood’s job was to infiltrate civil rights organizations and encourage leaders and members to commit felonious acts. He was also tasked with ensuring that Malcolm X’s security detail was arrested days prior to the assassination, guaranteeing Malcolm X didn’t have door security while at the Audubon Ballroom where he was killed Feb. 21, 1965.

The letter written by Wood was delivered to three of Malcolm’s daughters, Qubiliah Shabazz, Ilyasah Shabazz and Gamilah Shabazz, who were present at the Feb. 20 press conference at the Shabazz Center. Reggie Wood, the relative and administrator of Ray Wood’s estate read the letter to them.

January 25, 2011 TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN

I, Raymond A. Wood, being of sound mind and body wish to confess the following:

I was a Black New York City undercover police officer from April 1964 through May of 1971. I participated in actions that in hindsight were deplorable and detrimental to the advancement of my own Black people. My actions on behalf of the New York City Police Department (BOSSI) were done under duress and fear that if I did not follow the orders of my handlers I could face detrimental consequences. Presently, I am aging with failing health; recently I have learned of the death of Mr. Thomas Johnson and are deeply concerned that with my death his family will not be able exonerate him after being wrongly convicted in the killing of Malcolm X.

The Facts are as follows:

April 17, 1964, I was hired by the New York City police department. Without training I was immediately assigned to the BOSSI investigation unit.

My job was to infiltrate civil rights organizations throughout New York City, to find evidence of criminal activity, so the FBI could discredit and arrest its leaders.

After witnessing reported brutality at the hands of my co-workers (police), I was to resign, instead I was threatened with arrest by pinning marijuana and alcohol trafficking charges on me if I did not follow through with the assignments.

Under the direction of my handlers I was told to encourage leaders and members of civil rights groups to commit felonious acts.

The Statue of Liberty bombing idea was created by my supervisor/handler. Using surveillance the agency learned that Bow and Syyed were key players in Malcolm X’s crowd control security detail. It was my assignment to draw the two men into a federal crime, so that they could be arrested by the FBI and kept away from managing Malcolm X’s Audubon Ballroom door security on Feb. 21, 1965. On Feb. 16, 1965 the Statue of Liberty plot was carried out and the men arrested just days before the assassination of Malcolm. At that time I was not aware that Malcolm X was the target.

On Feb. 21, 1965 I was ordered to be at the Audubon Ballroom, where I was identified by witnesses while leaving the scene Thomas Johnson was later arrested and wrongfully convicted to protect my cover and the secrets of the FBI and NYPD.

I have placed my full confession into care of my cousin Reginald Wood Jr. I have requested that this information be held until after I have passed away.

It is my hope, that this information is received with the understanding that I have carried these secrets with a heavy heart and remorsefully regret my participation in this matter.

Raymond A. Wood