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Michael Brown was a 17yr-old who was shot and killed by local police in
the town of Ferguson, MO. Eye witnesses at the scene have reported that Brown held his hands in the air and said, “Don’t shoot!” Yet, despite Brown’s attempt to surrender, the officer kept firing. An autopsy report showed that Brown was shot six times by the police officer. At this time, the position of the victim’s body before and during the shooting is unclear, due to multiple sources of evidence being withheld from the public by the Ferguson police.
Witnesses have reported to the media that the officer fled the scene
without calling an ambulance and that immediately following the
shooting, the victim’s body remained in the street for five hours.
Protests in Ferguson, MO began immediately, along with rioting and
looting. The Ferguson police responded to protesters in a way that many
deemed excessive. It has been reported that the. Ferguson police
responded to angry, as well as, peaceful crowds, using military-style
tactics, tanks, and assault rifles loaded with rubber bullets.
Protected by gas masks, law enforcement released tear gas onto crowds
of protesters. The Governor of Missouri and other state officials
admonished Ferguson police and called for the police to back down.
Ferguson law enforcement refused to back out as further tensions
Ferguson law enforcement has also received criticism from people who
say they attempted to disparage Brown’s character. Originally, police
were slow to release the name of the officer who shot Michael Brown.
However, on the same day that the shooter’s name was released, police
released footage from a store robbery and reported Michael Brown as a
suspect. Ferguson Chief of Police also stated that although Michael
Brown was indeed a suspect in the store robbery, the police officer who
confronted him that night did not know of the robbery at that time.
The trouble doesn’t end there for Ferguson, MO law enforcement. Before
the death of Michael Brown, the NAACP had filed a racial profiling
lawsuit against the City of Ferguson. Additionally, Michael Brown’s
death is now being investigated by the Federal Justice Department. The
case has also attracted the attention of Benjamin Crump, the attorney
who represented Trayvon Martin’s family.
It is also interesting that Ferguson’s voter registration trends have
come under fire due to the national attention and media coverage of the
Michael Brown shooting. The community of Ferguson has a population
that is over 90% African-American, yet over 90% of the city’s elected
officials are Caucasian/White. It turns out that the African-Americans
citizens of Ferguson are vastly under-represented in their local
On Tuesday, August 19, 2014, as officials on the local, state, and
federal level continued their search for answers, Michael Brown’s
family began making plans for a funeral and memorial service.
May the family and loved ones of Michael Brown, along with concerned
citizens of the world, be comforted during this time, seeking solace
and peace…hoping as they may, that justice will be served. May his
soul rest in peace.