Michael Brown: Witnesses In St. Louis Claim Execution-Style Killing
Ferguson residents stare down police after the reported execution-style killing of unarmed teenager
If the account of the friend who says he witnessed the shooting death of an unarmed teenager in Ferguson, near St. Louis, MO, is correct, it would be extrajudicial execution of the teenager Michael Brown by the police.
Other witnesses provided similar accounts.
This is why it's good that the FBI is already involved in the investigation; separately the St. Louis Police Department is carrying out its own investigation.
This afternoon, Attorney General Eric Holder in a statement said: “The shooting incident in Ferguson, Missouri, this weekend deserves a fulsome review. In addition to the local investigation already underway, FBI agents from the St. Louis field office, working together with attorneys from the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division and the U.S. Attorney's Office, have opened a concurrent, federal inquiry. The federal investigation will supplement, rather than supplant, the inquiry by local authorities. At every step, we will work with the local investigators, who should be prepared to complete a thorough, fair investigation in their own right. I will continue to receive regular updates on this matter in the coming days. Aggressively pursuing investigations such as this is critical for preserving trust between law enforcement and the communities they serve."
If the witnesses in Ferguson are correct, the shooting would boost the argument of those who maintain that many police forces across the United States harbor hardened racist who use their uniform as a shield to carry out their death wishes against African American males.
The pattern of killings of Black males by White police officers suggest something way beyond random coincidences and it should be chilling to everyone except die-hard racist who don't believe there is a common humanity.
There are reportedly dozens of witnesses to the broad daylight shooting.
One of them interviewed was Brown's friend, Doran Johnson, who said they were walking from a convenience store when a police officer told them to get off the street. He said he told the officer they were already near their destination. He said the officer drove away and then pulled back and cut off the rode. The officer then tried to open the car door but he was so close to the young men that the door bounced back at the officer. The officer, then still inside the car reached out and started choking his friend, Johnson said. As Brown tried to pull himself free, the officer allegedly said something like "I will shoot you." Whereupon the officer allegedly pulled out his gun and fired, shooting Brown, while still inside his car.
Johnson said they could see that Brown was bleeding as they ran away. The officer who fired then got out of the car and Brown stopped and raised his hands and even started to kneel down. The officer continued with a barrage of bullets.
A female witness Piaget Crenshaw, offered a similar account from the point when Brown was seen trying to run away, to MSNBC, which was aired on Andrea Mitchell's broadcast today.
The Police Department in St. Louis in an initial statement had claimed the shooting occurred after a struggle for a police officer's weapon -- which of course would be a lie if the accounts provided by Johnson and several others are truthful.
Reportedly there are also cell phone videos of the incident.
The number of shots fired and the angle of the shots will answer many of these questions.
The investigation must include looking into the background and record of the officer or officers involved in the shooting death of Michael Brown and sharing that information.