Grand Jury: Darren Wilson not indicted in Michael Brown shooting death

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CLAYTON, MO (KTVI)-The grand jury investigating the fatal shooting of Michael Brown by Ferguson police Officer Darren Wilson has reached a decision. According St. Louis County Prosecutor Robert McCulloch, Wilson has not been indicted in the Michael Brown shooting death.  The grand jury decided that no probable cause existed to charge Officer Wilson.

On August 9, 2014, Brown, an unarmed black 18-year old, was shot and killed by Wilson, who is white, along a street in a Ferguson, MO apartment complex. The shooting led to demonstrations, confrontations with police, and some looting and violence.

Wilson reportedly engaged with Brown and another teen in the Canfield Green apartment complex when he saw them walking in the street. He has said that Brown had pinned him in his vehicle and engaged in a struggle over the officer’s gun. Multiple published reports say Wilson told investigators that he had feared for his life.

Officer Wilson has not been seen since the shooting. Protestors have demanded his arrest, but he has remained free pending the findings of the grand jury. That grand jury has been hearing evidence in the case since late August to decide if there wass probable cause to charge Officer Wilson with a crime ranging from manslaughter to first-degree murder.

Since the shooting, Brown supporters have demanded that Prosecutor McCulloch be removed from the case, claiming he could not fairly prosecute due to bias. McCulloch's father was a police officer killed in the line of duty in 1964 by an African-American man.

Protestors went so far as attempting a shutdown of Interstate 70 to get their demands heard.

“We want the officer held accountable and I think that’s the bottom line,” one protestor told FOX 2 at the time.  “Until that happens, we’re going to keep protesting.”

McCulloch has repeatedly stated that he will not step away from the case.

He told FOX 2’s George Sells back in September, “I think what’s perfectly clear is the people of this county have put their trust in me for a long time.  And if they didn’t have that trust, if they didn’t think I could and would present things in a fair and impartial manner, they wouldn’t keep reelecting me.”

Several reports of evidence presented to the grand jury were leaked to the media, disappointing the United States Justice Department.

Attorney General Eric Holder told CNN “This notion of leaking out selective information, which started as early as the release from the tape of that candy store, the convenience store, and then these leaks about what happened in the car, these are all the kinds of things I think are inappropriate. I said I’m exasperated, it’s a nice way of saying I’m mad. Whoever the sources of the leaks are, they need to shut up.”

The Justice Department is conducting its own investigation to see if federal civil-rights laws were violated by Officer Wilson.

UPDATES:

 

Joe Millitzer November 24, 20149:57 pm

LIVE Blog: Protesters spar with police in Ferguson – http://go.fox2now.com/1uzdGgO

Joe Millitzer November 24, 20149:08 pm

Senator Claire McCaskill releases statement:

“There will be many people who are disappointed in today’s decision, even though it is a result of a deliberate legal process that’s being independently checked by Attorney General Eric Holder and the U.S. Justice Department. While we await the conclusion of that independent investigation—and continue working together for solutions to systemic issues highlighted by this tragedy—I’m praying that the good people of St. Louis and local law enforcement will remain peaceful and respectful of one another.”

Joe Millitzer November 24, 20149:03 pm

Senator Jamilah Nasheed releases statement:

“I have long been on the opposing side of prosecutor Bob McCulloch on the Michael Brown grand jury case. I even started a petition, which received approximately 117,000 signatures, calling for his removal from the case. The prosecutor has a history with the African-American community in this city, leading me and many of my colleagues to believe he would not be able to remain unbiased on this case, even though it has been made clear that the outcome of this case could very possibly lead to further unrest and public suspicion of our local law enforcement.

I won’t stand by and say that I’m not frustrated or disappointed with today’s actions. It is okay to be angry and hurt by, or even protest because of, what has happened here today. However, it is not okay to destroy our communities or hold our neighbors hostage in their homes.

With this decision comes the opportunity to begin the healing process. We must come together as citizens of this diverse community and we must raise our voices for peace. Let us now continue down the path to a healing place for the St. Louis region. There are no more words to describe this tragic situation that have not already been said. My very heart goes out to Michael Brown’s family. But what we need to recognize on this day is that, despite the grand jury’s decision, those who have stood for justice since the beginning will continue to reshape our communities by our positive actions and our strength.

As a legislator, one of my roles is to restructure our city through policy. As we get closer to the beginning of the next legislative session, I will continue to work on bills that will help our city heal. I will be sponsoring a few pieces of legislation that will work toward that goal. One would dissolve all the villages that exist currently in St. Louis County and place the governance of those villages under the authority of unincorporated St. Louis County. The second would tighten current statute regarding the use of deadly force by a law enforcement officer. Yet another, calls for a special prosecutor to be named in the event of any law-enforcement-officer-involved shooting.

We stand at a turning point in history. How we move forward is up to us. United we stand, divided we fall. Let’s work together to make our future a better and brighter place.”

Joe Millitzer November 24, 20149:00 pm

Full video to be posted in 20 minutes.

Joe Millitzer November 24, 20148:58 pm

Gov. Jay Nixon issues statement on grand jury decision:

While the 12 men and women on the St. Louis County grand jury have concluded their work, the rest of us have much more work to do in order to use the lessons we have learned these past four months to create safer, stronger and more united communities.

As we continue to await word on the U.S. Justice Department’s ongoing investigation, I urge all those voicing their opinions regarding the grand jury’s decision to do so peacefully. I also urge everyone to continue working to make positive changes that will yield long-term social, economic and spiritual benefits for all our communities.

My commitment to the people of the region and state is this: I will do everything in my power to keep you safe and protect your right to speak. We must also make a commitment to one another: to trust more and fear less, to hold ourselves to a higher standard of personal responsibility and mutual respect, and to keep working to extend the promise of America to all our citizens.

It is my continued hope and expectation that peace will prevail. The world is watching. I am confident that together we will demonstrate the true strength and character of this region, and seize this opportunity to build a more just and prosperous future for all.

Joe Millitzer November 24, 20148:57 pm

How does this relate to the Sunshine law? “It is now a closed investigation so it is now an open file.”

Joe Millitzer November 24, 20148:54 pm

Many of the witness statements — some shared with the media — were
contradictory, and during the grand jury process, many witnesses
admitted they didn’t see the shooting or heard about it from others, St.
Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Robert McCulloch said. There were
also conflicting witness accounts of whether Michael Brown had his hands
up when he was shot, the prosecuting attorney said.

via CNN

Joe Millitzer November 24, 20148:54 pm

During the altercation between Michael Brown and Ferguson Police
Officer Darren Wilson, two shots were fired while Wilson was inside his
vehicle, St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Robert McCulloch said.
Brown ran, and Wilson gave chase, he said. Both stopped, and when Brown
moved toward the officer, Wilson fired “several more shots,” fatally
wounding Brown, McCulloch said.

via CNN Wire

Joe Millitzer November 24, 20148:46 pm

Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster’s statement about the grand jury’s decision:

“The death of Michael Brown has caused every Missourian to reflect deeply on divides that continue to exist within our state.  While Missouri’s law enforcement community is professional and dedicated to protecting our state’s citizens, these events call on all leaders to explore solutions that increase confidence and communication across those divides.  The most lasting lessons of Ferguson are yet to be realized.”

Joe Millitzer November 24, 20148:39 pm

Joe Millitzer November 24, 20148:39 pm

Joe Millitzer November 24, 20148:38 pm

Joe Millitzer November 24, 20148:38 pm

Joe Millitzer November 24, 20148:38 pm

Joe Millitzer November 24, 20148:38 pm

Joe Millitzer November 24, 20148:30 pm

We are profoundly disappointed that the killer of our child will not face the
consequence of his actions.
 
While
we understand that many others share our pain, we ask that you channel
your frustration in ways that will make a positive change.  We need to
work together to fix the system that allowed this to happen.  
 
Join with us in our campaign to ensure that every police officer working the
streets in this country wears a body camera.  
 
We respectfully ask that you please keep your protests peaceful.  Answering
violence with violence is not the appropriate reaction.    
 
Let’s not just make noise, let’s make a difference.