Civil rights leader wants Ferguson case reopened

ST. LOUIS (AP) – A national civil rights leader is joining calls to reopen the investigation into the fatal police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri.

Justin Hansford is executive director of the Thurgood Marshall Civil Rights Center. In an op-ed piece Friday in the Washington Post, he urged the man expected to become St. Louis County’s next prosecutor, Wesley Bell, to launch a new investigation.

Bell defeated longtime prosecutor Bob McCulloch in the Democratic primary on Tuesday. No Republicans are running for the post, meaning Bell is facing no challengers in the November general election.

Brown’s mother, Lezley McSpadden, launched an online petition seeking a renewed look at the 2014 shooting that sparked widespread protests and helped fuel the Black Lives Matter movement. The black teenager was unarmed when he was fatally shot by a white police officer Darren Wilson during a confrontation on Aug. 9, 2014. Wilson was cleared of wrongdoing and resigned that November.

Meanwhile, the Missouri governor’s office says it can’t appoint a special prosecutor to reopen the investigation into the fatal police shooting of Michael Brown, despite pressure from Brown’s mother.

Republican Gov. Mike. Parson’s spokeswoman said Friday that the governor “has no legal authority to appoint a special prosecutor in any case.”