From [HERE] The US Congress on Saturday passed legislation [HR 5067, PDF] that would continue reviews of racially motivated killings in the civil rights era. The bill indefinitely extends [AP report] a 2007 law, which expires next year, that calls for a full and complete accounting of racial killings, many of which have been closed cases for decades. More than 100 cases have been examined so far with one conviction, but more cases are continuously being identified. The law [HR 5067 materials] provides federal resources to local jurisdiction to look into the cases. The legislation requires the Justice Department and the FBI [official websites] to consult civil rights organizations, universities and other sources of evidence for cases up to the end of 1979.
There were numerous racially-motivated murders and hate crimes [GovTrack report], particularly in the South. Decades after they occurred, a number of these crimes had still gone unsolved. The 110th Congress then passed a bill HR 923 [text, PDF] called the Emmett Till Unsolved Civil Rights Crime Act [HR 923 materials]. The legislation passed nearly unanimously in both the House and the Senate. It established unsolved civil rights crimes division at both the FBI and the Department of Justice.