Evidence Presented To Michael Brown Grand Jury Appears To Support Officer’s Version Of Events

What if the Grand Jury investigating the Michael Brown shooting fails to indict Officer Darren Wilson? We may find out if newly leaked evidence is accurate.

Protests Continue In Missouri Town After Police Shooting Of 18-Yr-Old Man

It’s been nearly three months now since Michael Brown was shot and killed by Ferguson, Missouri Police Office Darren Wilson in an incident the facts of which remain largely shrouded in mystery, rumor, and sometimes conflicting eyewitness statements to the media. The shooting itself, of course, set off more than two weeks of protests and confrontations between the police and citizens in the streets of the St. Louis suburb, with protesters demanding that Wilson be arrested and the police responding, at least initially, with an overly excessive militarized response that only seemed to inflame the crowds and, in many cases, shock the nation. Since then, the Ferguson story has largely disappeared from the headlines, but that doesn’t mean that the story is over. Protests have continued in the town on a regular basis, and there have been incidents such as confrontations between protesters and football fans outside of St. Louis Rams games, and, of course, continued calls for Wilson to be charged and arrested, with some implication that things will become violent if the Grand Jury fails to return an indictment against Officer Wilson. In the past week or so, though, there have been reports leaking out of the investigation that seem to support the officer’s version of events as we know them, and which seem to suggest that we may not see a Grand Jury indictment at all.

The first leaks appeared last week in The New York Times which passes along information from unnamed Federal officials involved in the Civil Rights investigation into the shooting that is running parallel to the Grand Jury proceedings:

WASHINGTON — The police officer who fatally shot Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., two months ago has told investigators that he was pinned in his vehicle and in fear for his life as he struggled over his gun with Mr. Brown, according to government officials briefed on the federal civil rights investigation into the matter.

The officer, Darren Wilson, has told the authorities that during the scuffle, Mr. Brown reached for the gun. It was fired twice in the car, according to forensics tests performed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The first bullet struck Mr. Brown in the arm; the second bullet missed.

The forensics tests showed Mr. Brown’s blood on the gun, as well as on the interior door panel and on Officer Wilson’s uniform. Officer Wilson told the authorities that Mr. Brown had punched and scratched him repeatedly, leaving swelling on his face and cuts on his neck.

This is the first public account of Officer Wilson’s testimony to investigators, but it does not explain why, after he emerged from his vehicle, he fired at Mr. Brown multiple times. It contradicts some witness accounts, and it will not calm those who have been demanding to know why an unarmed man was shot a total of six times. Mr. Brown’s death continues to fuel anger and sometimes-violent protests.

In September, Officer Wilson appeared for four hours before a St. Louis County grand jury, which was convened to determine whether there is probable cause that he committed a crime. Legal experts have said that his decision to testify was surprising, given that it was not required by law. But the struggle in the car may prove to be a more influential piece of information for the grand jury, one that speaks to Officer Wilson’s state of mind, his feeling of vulnerability and his sense of heightened alert when he killed Mr. Brown.

Police officers typically have wide latitude to use lethal force if theyreasonably believe that they are in imminent danger.

The officials said that while the federal investigation was continuing, the evidence so far did not support civil rights charges against Officer Wilson. To press charges, the Justice Department would need to clear a high bar, proving that Officer Wilson willfully violated Mr. Brown’s civil rights when he shot him.

(…)

The officials briefed on the case said the forensic evidence gathered in the car lent credence to Officer Wilson’s version of events. According to his account, he was trying to leave his vehicle when Mr. Brown pushed him back in. Once inside the S.U.V., the two began to fight, Officer Wilson told investigators, and he removed his gun from the holster on his right hip.

Chief Jon Belmar of the St. Louis County Police Department has said in interviews that Officer Wilson was “pushed back into the car” by Mr. Brown and “physically assaulted.” The department is conducting the local investigation into Mr. Brown’s death.

Spokesmen for the F.B.I. and the Justice Department declined to comment.

In an interview, Benjamin L. Crump, a lawyer for the Brown family, dismissed Officer Wilson’s account of what happened in the S.U.V. that day.

“What the police say is not to be taken as gospel,” Mr. Crump said, adding that Officer Wilson should be indicted by the grand jury and his case sent to trial. “He can say what he wants to say in front of a jury. They can listen to all the evidence and the people can have it transparent so they know that the system works for everybody.”

Yesterday, The Washington Post laid out additional reports that have been leaked from the investigation that seem to further corroborate the version of events that Officer Wilson has apparently communicated, and again calls into question whether there would be a sufficient legal basis to proceed forward with criminal charges:

Ferguson, Mo., police officer Darren Wilson and Michael Brown fought for control of the officer’s gun, and Wilson fatally shot the unarmed teenager after he moved toward the officer as they faced off in the street, according to interviews, news accounts and the full report of the St. Louis County autopsy of Brown’s body.

Because Wilson is white and Brown was black, the case has ignited intense debate over how police interact with African American men. But more than a half-dozen unnamed black witnesses have provided testimony to a St. Louis County grand jury that largely supports Wilson’s account of events of Aug. 9, according to several people familiar with the investigation who spoke with The Washington Post.

Some of the physical evidence — including blood spatter analysis, shell casings and ballistics tests — also supports Wilson’s account of the shooting, The Post’s sources said, which casts Brown as an aggressor who threatened the officer’s life. The sources spoke on the condition of anonymity because they are prohibited from publicly discussing the case.

(…)

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch late Tuesday night published Brown’s official county autopsy report, an analysis of which also suggests that the 18-year-old may not have had his hands raised when he was fatally shot, as has been the contention of protesters who have demanded Wilson’s arrest.

Experts told the newspaper that Brown was first shot at close range and may have been reaching for Wilson’s weapon while the officer was still in his vehicle and Brown was standing at the driver’s side window. The autopsy found material “consistent with products that are discharged from the barrel of a firearm” in a wound on Brown’s thumb, the autopsy says.

Judy Melinek, a forensic pathologist in San Francisco who reviewed the report for the Post-Dispatch­, said it “supports the fact that this guy is reaching for the gun, if he has gunpowder particulate material in the wound.”

Melinek, who is not involved in the investigation, said the autopsy did not support those who claim Brown was attempting to flee or surrender when Wilson shot him in the street.

Victor W. Weedn, chairman of the George Washington University Department of Forensic Sciences, said the autopsy report raises doubts about whether Brown’s hands were raised at the time of the shooting but is not conclusive.

“Somebody could have raised their hands way above their head and lowered their hands and then be shot,” Weedn said. “So an autopsy will never rule out that the hands were above the head. It can only say what happened at the time of the shooting. . . . With the graze to the right arm, it appears the arm was in a vertical position, suggesting that it was closer to down by his side, but it could have been higher.”

(…)

During his testimony before the grand jury last month, Wilson told jurors that the encounter with Brown and his friend Dorian Johnson began when he ordered the two men to stop walking in the street and get onto the sidewalk, The Post’s sources said.

Things quickly escalated, Wilson told jurors, with Brown shouting an expletive at him and refusing to move to the sidewalk, The Post’s sources said. In August, an attorney for Johnson said the officer used profanity when ordering the two onto the sidewalk.

The Post’s sources interviewed in recent days said Wilson testified that he stopped his police SUV and opened the door to approach Brown, but the 18-year-old used both hands to slam the door shut, trapping him in his patrol vehicle. Brown then reached through the open window and began to repeatedly punch the officer in the face, Wilson testified.

The officer said he reached for his gun to defend himself, but Brown grabbed it and let go only after it fired twice. Two casings from Wilson’s gun were recovered from the police SUV, the sources said.

After he was shot in the altercation at the vehicle, Brown fled with Johnson, and Wilson testified that he ordered Brown to stop and lower himself to the ground. Instead, Brown turned and moved toward the officer, the sources said. Wilson said he feared that Brown, who was 6-foot-4 and weighed nearly 300 pounds, would overpower him, so he repeatedly fired his gun.

Brown was shot at least six times, according to all three autopsies that have been conducted.

The Post-Dispatch, in a story on Wilson’s account of the incident published early Wednesday, cited a single “source with knowledge of his statements” in providing additional details. The story said Wilson testified that during the struggle at the SUV, Brown pressed the barrel of his gun against the officer’s hip and attempted to prevent Wilson from reaching the trigger. According to Wilson’s testimony, the Post-Dispatch said, Brown was running toward Wilson when he was fatally shot and his hands were not up.

The source also told the newspaper that Wilson told jurors he was trapped in the front seat and could not use his pepper spray to subdue Brown because the officer would have also incapacitated himself. His baton was also out of reach, at the back of his utility belt, pinned between his body and the seat. He also did not have a stun gun, so he drew his gun, the Post-Dispatch reported.

The autopsy says that Brown was shot in the forehead, twice in the chest and once in the upper right arm. The fatal wound to Brown’s head indicates that he was leaning or falling forward, and the path of a sixth shot, which hit Brown’s forearm and traveled from the back of his arm to his inner arm, means that Brown’s palms were not facing Wilson in an act of surrender, according to analysts cited by the Post-Dispatch.

As a preliminary matter, it’s worth noting that we should be as cautious about judging this case based on leaked evidence before the Grand Jury has spoken as we should have been in the days immediately after Brown’s shooting when the evidence that was coming to the public consisted mostly of speculation and statements from only those witnesses that chose to go public. Most importantly, we don’t have in front of us all the evidence that the Grand Jury does, we haven’t actually seen the witnesses testify in person, meaning we have no basis on which to judge their credibility, and we aren’t getting the same complete picture that they are. For example, just looking at the autposy results or reading what some eyewitnesses to the incident may have said is basically viewing things in isolation in a way that the Grand Jurors aren’t supposed to be doing. Instead, they are supposed to be looking at all the facts, taken together, in order to determine if sufficient evidence exists to bring some kind of charge against Officer Wilson. That charge could range from murder all the way down to criminally negligent homicide, but it’s not easy to make that judgement when you’re just viewing snippets of information here and there, and you’re doing it through the lens of the media and “experts” who themselves don’t have anymore access to the entire package of evidence that is being presented to the Grand Jury. The final thing to keep in mind, of course, is that the leaks that are coming out are selective leaks coming from sources that are trying to push public opinion on the case in one direction or the other.

All of that being said, though, it’s impossible not to look at this evidence such as it is and conclude that the story that became popularized about the confrontation between Brown and Wilson didn’t play out that was popularized in the days immediately after it occurred and the protests began. Assuming the autopsy and forensic reports are correct, then it does indeed appear that there was a struggle for Wilson’s gun inside his vehicle, and that at least one of the shots that hit Brown, although not fatally, occurred while that happened. There doesn’t seem to be any other reasonable way to interpret the presence of his blood inside the car and on its exterior or the presence of close range gunshot wounds and apparent gunpowder residue on Brown’s body. The autopsy report also seems to conflict with the claims that Brown was in the process of running away, or surrendering depending on who you listen to, when the fatal shots were fired and may be consistent with Wilson’s contention that Brown was moving toward him when the final shots were fired. Taken together, all of these tends to paint a far more complicated picture of what happened that afternoon than was being circulated by the media and protesters in the days immediately after the incident and it places the entire incident in a new light. To be sure, even if it is true that Brown had tried to reach for Wilson’s gun at some point, it could still be possible that Wilson’s final use of force was unjustified, but that’s something that will have to be judged by the Grand Jury in the totality of the circumstances, including the fact that this entire incident unfolded over the course of less than ninety seconds, and perhaps less than a minute, according to several of the eyewitness reports that have been made to the media since August.

In addition to these factual issues, there may also be legal barriers to proceeding against Wilson. Specifically, one provision of the Missouri Code appears to give police near unlimited discretion in using deadly force in situations similar to the Brown case:

Chapter 563 of the Missouri Revised Statutes, will no doubt come into play in this new case in which a cop shot an unarmed man.

Under this law, a cop is justified in using deadly force “in effecting an arrest or in preventing an escape from custody” if “he reasonably believes” it is necessary in order to “to effect the arrest and also reasonably believes that the person to be arrested has committed or attempted to commit a felony…or may otherwise endanger life or inflict serious physical injury unless arrested without delay.”

The possibility that all of this leads to, of course, is that the Grand Jury will return without indicting Wilson at all, or that it will indict him on some lesser charge that will do little to quell the anger of the people who continue to protest in Ferguson and elsewhere regarding this case. While it’s still a stretch to fear that this result would automatically lead to violence akin to some of the looting and property damage that we saw in August, it’s logical to assume that such a result would lead to some kind of unrest even it if were somewhat quelled by factors such as the weather. Additionally, the report in the Times, which appears to come from Federal investigators, seems to be laying the groundwork for the possibility that the Justice Department may not, in the end, bring civil rights charges due to lack of evidence that Wilson was acting with the intent of violating Brown’s civil rights when this all happened. Perhaps that’s what all of this leaking is all about, to try to lay the groundwork for results out of the Grand Jury that people in Ferguson are likely to find disappointing to say the least. Whether that stops the protests from reigniting in a few weeks if the Grand Jury does indeed fail to indict remains to be seen.

FILED UNDER: Crime, Law and the Courts, Race and Politics
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010. Before joining OTB, he wrote at Below The BeltwayThe Liberty Papers, and United Liberty Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Modulo Myself says:

    Actually, if you read through the leaks, you’ll find that Wilson’s story is not corroborated on a crucial part. Nobody says that Brown charged Wilson; one witness says that Brown was shot and staggered towards Wilson at a distance from 20-25 feet with his hands held out, not up, in a gesture of bewilderment, before being shot twice. This witness also says that that did not need to happen.

    These leaks strike me as a desperate need to legitimatize a terrible system. If there were enough competent people involved, the people doing the leaking would be happy if Wilson was charged. But there aren’t.

    Pavlov’s white people can get terrified at all of the rioting and unrest, but what happened after the shooting was hardly a riot, as riots in American history go. It was organized, and under control, an run by people far more clever and attentive than the morons who paid for the heavy SWAT armor or the butch freaks who wore the costume were, and this movement is what St Louis will have to face if Wilson walks.




    0



    0
  2. Mu says:

    Nothing to restore confidence in the judicial process like selective pro-cop “leaks”.




    0



    0
  3. stonetools says:

    I’ll point out that there are six eyewitnesses that confirm that Micheal Brown in no way posed a threat to Officer Wilson when he was shot dead. (The problem seems to be that most of these witnesses are the wrong color).

    Two men, shocked at what they saw, describe an unarmed teenager with his hands up in the air as he’s gunned down by a police officer.

    They were contractors doing construction work in Ferguson, Missouri, on the day Michael Brown was killed.

    And the men, who asked not to be identified after CNN contacted them, said they were about 50 feet away from Officer Darren Wilson when he opened fire.

    This is what the DOJ said about the leaks:

    S. Justice Department officials on Thursday criticized local authorities’ investigation of the shooting death of an unarmed black teenager in Ferguson, Missouri, saying the case had been handled in a “selective” and “inappropriate” manner..

    The department’s criticism comes after the official St. Louis County autopsy of Michael Brown, 18, who was shot by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson on Aug. 9, was leaked to media on Wednesday.

    The autopsy report, obtained by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and published on its website, suggested Brown sustained a gunshot wound to the hand from close range and came as a grand jury considered whether Wilson should face charges.

    “The department considers the selective release of information in this investigation to be irresponsible and highly troubling,” Justice Department spokeswoman Dena Iverson said.

    “Since the release of the convenience store footage there seems to be an inappropriate effort to influence public opinion about this case,” Iverson added, referring to the Ferguson police department’s release of video shortly after the shooting that showed a robbery at a nearby convenience store, although it did not specifically link Brown at the time to the footage.

    U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder expressed frustration with local officials investigating the incident as the Justice Department also conducts a federal investigation, according to a department official.

    I can tell you as somone with prosecutorial experience, that the “prosecution” of Officer Wilson is highly irregular, to say the last. I’ll be blunt: it looks to me like they are are doing their best NOT to prosecute him.




    0



    0
  4. beth says:

    I’m not sure how this disproves anything. Johnson has always claimed that Brown was shot first while he was partly in the police car. Gun residue on his hands just shows he was close to the gun when it was fired. If someone pulled out a gun that close, it’s instinctive to try and grab it or put up a hand to block it.




    0



    0
  5. Rafer Janders says:

    I’ll just outscource my reply to the great John Cole:

    There was no mention of the named black witnesses who have publicly stated repeatedly what they saw. Instead, it is speculation on the autopsy report (note late in the story the person commenting- Judy Melinek doesn’t even know if there is GSR on Brown, had never examined the body, but was opining anyway), we finally have Wilson’s sanitized description (he “asked” them politely to get out of he road, not told them to get the f**k out of the road and then slammed the vehicle in reverse as stated by named witnesses), and doesn’t even discuss the gun shot wounds to the back or the fact that Brown was up to 25 feet away and fleeing when he was shot. No mention of why Wilson never filed a report, either. Funny, that.

    I think my favorite part was the reefer madness bullshit, in which it was stated he had enough THC in his system to cause hallucinations. Reminded me of the DARE days when cops with straight faces told kids that if they smoked pot they would jump out of windows thinking they could fly.

    It’s almost like this story was tailor made to make white people comfortable. And mad props to the establishment for massaging the media and controlling the message:

    http://www.balloon-juice.com/




    0



    0
  6. Rafer Janders says:

    Please release my comment from moderation, thanks.




    0



    0
  7. superdestroyer says:

    @Modulo Myself:

    What part of having the wrong convenience store burned out is the It was organized, and under control, an run by people far more clever and attentive than the morons? Once again, is a fact does not agree with a progressive’s POV, then the data must be ignored.




    0



    0
  8. @Rafer Janders:

    That comment appears to discount the half-dozen or so African-American eyewitnesses who apparently told a story to the Grand Jury that corroborates the Officer’s story.

    I’m not saying they won’t indict, they might but it could be on something less than murder, I am saying that people need to be prepared for the possibility that the won’t and that, if they do, there could be an acquittal here.




    0



    0
  9. JKB says:

    @stonetools: I can tell you as somone with prosecutorial experience, that the “prosecution” of Officer Wilson is highly irregular, to say the last. I’ll be blunt: it looks to me like they are are doing their best NOT to prosecute him.

    Hmm? Someone with prosecutorial experience might know that they are not prosecuting Wilson but presenting the investigation to the Grand Jury for a determination as to whether there is evidence of a crime that should be prosecuted.

    Nice try. With all your “experiences” I don’t see how you find the time to comment on the internet.




    0



    0
  10. Modulo Myself says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    I will guarantee that if the sole fact corroborated by witnesses in Wilson’s story was that a struggle in the vehicle occurred and a shot was fired hitting Brown, it will go down in history as Wilson having told the truth.

    This is the point of the framing of these leaks; Wilson’s story does not add up and in the end, I’m guessing that none of the witnesses will have Brown charging Wilson with his head down. But if you frame it consistently, and make the gullible believe it, then there’s a good reason for his not being charged.




    0



    0
  11. JKB says:

    @beth: If someone pulled out a gun that close, it’s instinctive to try and grab it or put up a hand to block it.

    And if that gun is lawfully carried and its removal from its holster justifiable under the circumstances, such as being assaulted through your police cruiser window, then trying to grab the gun gives the officer reasonable believe of imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury and discharge of the weapon in order to stop the attacker is justifiable use of deadly force.




    0



    0
  12. beth says:

    @JKB: WTF are you talking about? I was commenting that the mere presence of gun residue doesn’t prove anything about the circumstances in which that gun was shot. You’re getting more incoherent every day.




    0



    0
  13. JKB says:

    @Modulo Myself: I’m guessing that none of the witnesses will have Brown charging Wilson with his head down.

    Don’t know about “head down”, but there was long ago a contemporary cell phone video of Brown still lying in the street with the an individual describing events which ends with the fact that Brown turned and charged Wilson. I expect this person was identified and gave testimony to the Grand Jury. Do you have reports that he changed his story?




    0



    0
  14. stonetools says:

    I can see that JKB has joined the Officer Wilson defense team…

    Guess what, JKB, even if Brown did fight with Wilson for the gun that doesnot justify Wilson shooting him dead as he fled and tried to surrender.




    0



    0
  15. JKB says:

    @beth:

    I’m sorry, I thought you were up on the reports. Brown was shot in the palm of his hand with residue inside the wound which indicates grasping of the barrel. And there was blood on the gun as well as Brown’s fingerprints.




    0



    0
  16. Modulo Myself says:

    @beth:

    In the minds of a lot of people, there’s no way that Wilson drew the gun because he lost control of a situation. It has to be a black kid who just wants to kill a cop.




    0



    0
  17. JKB says:

    @stonetools:

    No, it doesn’t, but it does contribute to reasonable fear of death or serious bodily injury if reports that Brown moved back toward Wilson are substantiated.




    0



    0
  18. beth says:

    @JKB: And all that proves is that he was close to the gun when it went off. If you’re halfway inside a car window and the driver pulls out a gun, you would instinctively either try to get it or block the shot. It’s human nature. My statement makes no judgment on what happened before the shot.




    0



    0
  19. Modulo Myself says:

    @JKB:

    From another leaked witness:

    mong the recollections of the witness, who agreed to an interview on the condition that his name not be used, were:

    1 The officer did not fire until Brown turned back toward him.

    1 Brown put his arms out to his sides but never raised his hands high.

    1 Brown staggered toward Wilson despite commands to stop.

    1 The two were about 20 to 25 feet apart when the last shots were fired.

    He would not detail what he told the grand jury. Various witnesses have given differing accounts since the white officer killed the unarmed black teen Aug. 9, triggering protests and riots.

    Some have said that Wilson first fired as Brown ran away from him, then pumped off more shots after Brown turned around.

    Some have said Brown raised his arms high in surrender, giving rise to a common protesters’ chant of “Hands up, don’t shoot” while mimicking the move.

    But this witness said Brown never put his hands straight up, instead holding his elbows straight out from his torso, palms turned upward in a sort of gesture of disbelief.

    The witness said Wilson didn’t have to kill Brown. “It went from zero to 100 like that, in the blink of an eye. … What transpired to us, in my eyesight, was murder. Down outright murder.”

    Supposedly, this is the only person, except for Wilson, who witnessed the whole thing. And he clearly says staggering. Brown was shot at many times before the final two shots. He was most likely wounded. Wilson’s story is basically that Brown charged him and he had to shoot. This witness does not remotely describe a similar situation. And so far, no one has spoken to the media has said anything that corresponds to Wilson’s story.

    Keep in mind that I found this witness’s story because it was touted by a bunch of people as backing up Wilson’s claim, mostly because it says Brown’s arms were not fully up, just out. There’s really no care for detail or for the truth going on.




    0



    0
  20. beth says:

    @JKB: Brown was running away from Wilson. At thst point Wilson, still in the car, could have shut the door, called for backup and driven to safety. At the very least there’s horribly sloppy police work that went on. There’s no reason for Brown to be dead.




    0



    0
  21. michael reynolds says:

    Unless Mr. Brown had a weapon the police officer had no business being in fear for his life. The bar is set way too low in Missouri. The only way a suspect gets inside a cop car enough to plausibly reach for a gun which would have most likely been holstered on the far side of the officer’s body, is if the cop has been negligent. Cops have tasers, pepper spray and presumably some sort of baton. He could also have simply stepped on the gas.

    This may turn out to have been legal under Missouri law, but as is often the case, the crime is what’s legal.




    0



    0
  22. JKB says:

    @beth:

    Police officers do not shut the door and drive away. Wilson pursued two individuals that had just feloniously assaulted a police officer. That’s his job. In any case, he didn’t pursue them far before Brown turned around on him and reportedly charged at him.

    An individual who will attack a police officer, no fight with, but attack, is considered a very dangerous person. Much more so than if they attacked a private citizen. They attacked the police rather than seeking to evade. Such an individual is considered a danger to the public.




    0



    0
  23. LaMont says:

    I hope these leaks are inaccurate. If it is, what a frame job this is turning out to be! The why and when does not appear to really matter.




    0



    0
  24. JKB says:

    @michael reynolds: Cops have tasers, pepper spray and presumably some sort of baton. He could also have simply stepped on the gas.

    tasers, pepper spray, batons, etc are not self defense weapons but rather means of implementing pain compliance. In any case, the reports indicate that pepper spray is not appropriate in a grapple as it would also affect the officer reducing his ability to defend himself. Wilson was not equipped with a taser, which also not good in a grapple. His baton was pinned in his belt behind his back.

    Driving away with a person in the window is not an action in accordance with policy and would only have resulted in accusations of excessive force and wrongful endangerment as people witnessed it.

    Stopping the officer from leaving his cruiser is an aggressive act. Battering him through the window while he is trapped inside in a vulnerable position is also a very aggressive act. Wilson obviously drew his weapon to defend himself. Brown (and Johnson) tried either to grab or block the gun, acts that would further put Wilson in reasonable fear. In the struggle the gun discharged, intentionally or unintentionally, doesn’t matter as the use of deadly force is justifiable in this situation given the attack and Brown’s size and physicality.

    In any case, a person is not required to exhaust a list of means before using deadly force to stop a threat if they have reasonable fear of death or serious bodily injury. They can simply use the force necessary to stop the threat by whatever means they are able to implement that force.




    0



    0
  25. C. Clavin says:

    But Melinek told MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell on Wednesday that her comments had been taken “out of context” and that she believed the findings could be explained by other scenarios as well.
    “What happens sometimes is when you get interviewed and you have a long conversation with a journalist, they’re going to take things out of context,” she said. “I made it very clear that we only have partial information here. We don’t have the scene information. We don’t have the police investigation. We don’t have all the witness statements. And you can’t interpret autopsy findings in a vacuum.”




    0



    0
  26. Rafer Janders says:

    @JKB:

    Driving away with a person in the window is not an action in accordance with policy and would only have resulted in accusations of excessive force and wrongful endangerment as people witnessed it.

    Well thank god that Wilson didn’t endanger Michael Brown that way! Michael Brown might have really gotten hurt,and Wilson would be facing allegations of excessive force!

    Instead Brown is dead and Wilson is facing accusations of murder, so it looks like acting in accord with policy worked….uh, wait, what?




    0



    0
  27. al-Ameda says:

    @JKB:

    In any case, a person is not required to exhaust a list of means before using deadly force to stop a threat if they have reasonable fear of death or serious bodily injury. They can simply use the force necessary to stop the threat by whatever means they are able to implement that force.

    That calls into question the quality and level of training, doesn’t it? The option (the decision) to use deadly force should be the last option, and an officer should use (exhaust) other means prior to a decision to kill another person. What is a “reasonable fear of death”? Does that include an unarmed person a few feet away who moves toward you? Does that create a “fear of death”?

    Thus far, to-date, based on the news accounts and subsequent information, I have a hard time believing that a well-trained officer would have acted as Officer Wilson did.




    0



    0
  28. anjin-san says:

    @JKB:

    batons, etc are not self defense weapons

    Really? You can lay a world of hurt on an opponent with a nightstick. Put them in the ER, put them in the ground. I would certainly never close on someone thus armed if it were possible to avoid it.

    A baton is a deadly weapon, and in the hands of a trained person is it quite effective for self-defense.




    0



    0
  29. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @michael reynolds: Oh, the stupid, it burns.

    Unless Mr. Brown had a weapon the police officer had no business being in fear for his life.

    Right, because before guns were invented no one ever killed anyone. Especially 6’4″ men who weight almost 300 pounds.

    The bar is set way too low in Missouri. The only way a suspect gets inside a cop car enough to plausibly reach for a gun which would have most likely been holstered on the far side of the officer’s body, is if the cop has been negligent.

    “Negligent?” As in, let a black man get close enough to his cruiser to lunge through the window and grapple for his gun? That’s what you’re saying.

    Cops have tasers, pepper spray and presumably some sort of baton.

    All of which are tremendously useful while grappling while seated in a running vehicle. No wonder you write fantasy.

    He could also have simply stepped on the gas.

    And sent a 5,000-lb SUV careering out of control down a street with a man hanging through the window.

    As for those eyewitnesses? Here are a few inconvenient facts that shred their credibility.

    1) Not one of Brown’s gunshot wounds were from the rear, all from the front — so “shot while running away” is impossible.

    2) Not one of Brown’s arm wounds are consistent with “arms raised” or “hands up.”

    3) At least one witness said that Wilson grabbed Brown and dragged him into the cruiser through the window. Just what kind of suicidal idiot would use such a move against a 6’4″, 300-lb. man? The guy in the car has almost no leverage, and is drawing a much larger opponent into an enclosed space where each has about the same chance of getting control of the cop’s gun. I don’t think even wr or Cliffy would do something that senseless.

    This may turn out to have been legal under Missouri law, but as is often the case, the crime is what’s legal.

    This is a case where a white cop shot a black man. There are no mitigating circumstances; the cop was wrong, and must be punished. Period.

    Why not just end this farce and lynch the cop? At least it might cut down on the property damage from the rioting.




    0



    0
  30. anjin-san says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Cops have tasers, pepper spray and presumably some sort of baton.

    All of which are tremendously useful while grappling while seated in a running vehicle. No wonder you write fantasy.

    Pepper spray might come in quite handy in a situation like this.




    0



    0
  31. al-Ameda says:

    @anjin-san:

    A baton is a deadly weapon, and in the hands of a trained person is it quite effective for self-defense.

    Exactly. It’s not a gun, but if he had clubbed Brown with a baton he could have done real damage to Brown.

    My father was a San Francisco city police officer for 30 years (through the 50s 60s and 70s) and he never fired his service revolver once in the lie of duty. For half his career he was assigned to the southern districts and neighborhoods of the city, which then as now, are somewhat tough areas. He told me once that an unruly group of people was throwing rocks and bottles at him and his partner, they drew batons, held their ground, tried to keep that group where they were, and he radioed for more support – it did not occur to them to draw their guns to control the situation.




    0



    0
  32. Tillman says:

    @JKB:

    Driving away with a person in the window is not an action in accordance with policy and would only have resulted in accusations of excessive force and wrongful endangerment as people witnessed it.

    As opposed to what we have now? A dead black guy and protests over police conduct?

    I can grok that the officer’s training would have made him unlikely to do this, but you’re arguing consequentially there.




    0



    0
  33. grumpy realist says:

    @JKB: Then maybe the police force should have been trained to exhaust all other methods of self-defense before pulling out a gun, which is what looks like what happened in this case.

    Police find it very easy to kill people. Especially if they’re of the “wrong color.” Not a good thing.




    0



    0
  34. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: Pepper spray might come in quite handy in a situation like this.

    Because nothing makes a fight in a running vehicle than disabling both combatants.

    There’s a key word you don’t seem to understand. It’s pepper spray. It has an area affect (something I know from unpleasant personal experience). Setting it off inside a vehicle is guaranteed to incapacitate everyone in that vehicle.

    Is this why you so carefully avoid saying things of substance? Because when you do, you say something this mind-bogglingly stupid?




    0



    0
  35. anjin-san says:

    @al-Ameda:

    Once upon a time, cops took not having to draw/fire their weapons as a point of pride. It showed they had the skills to control situations by other means.




    0



    0
  36. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Tillman: As opposed to what we have now? A dead black guy and protests over police conduct?

    Add in a few more civilians run down by an out-of-control 5,000-lb. SUV. That would be a HUGE improvement, wouldn’t it?




    0



    0
  37. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @grumpy realist: Then maybe the police force should have been trained to exhaust all other methods of self-defense before pulling out a gun, which is what looks like what happened in this case.

    You fail to understand a key point. Cops aren’t trained for “self-defense.” They are trained to confront and defeat opponents, not just to protect themselves. They aren’t supposed to avoid and flee from confrontations. They aren’t supposed to run away from threats.

    Ordinary people study “self-defense” and avoid and run from bad guys because it’s not their job to handle such situations. It’s the cops’ job.

    Read this account of a cop who focused on self-defense and avoiding danger, and try to contain your contempt for him.




    0



    0
  38. anjin-san says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    There’s a key word you don’t seem to understand. It’s pepper spray.

    Actually, neither one of us knows exactly what the officer had available to him. In recent years, pepper foams and gels have been replacing old school pepper sprays for exactly this reason – less dispersion, better targeting. Cops tend to be early implementers when it comes to field equipment, so there is a reasonable chance the officer in question was thus equipped.

    On another note, is it possible for you to comment without name calling? Just a few days ago, you were all about “respect for our hosts” and you were complaining about others engaging in name calling.




    0



    0
  39. bandit says:

    It’s just such a sad day for the lunatic racist haters who make up the OTB comments circljerk that they just can’t accept the reality that their lies about Ferguson are just that. But they still have their seeping hatred and cognitive dissonance to hold onto. And their anti-depressants.




    0



    0
  40. Pinky says:

    @anjin-san: Pepper spray at a range of 1 foot. That’s a great way to gain control of a situation.




    0



    0
  41. Modulo Myself says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    What you lack (and probably always will) is the recognition that there are many things the police are useful for, only one of which is confronting and defeating opponents. Identifying opponents is one, and dealing with the unknown is another.




    0



    0
  42. anjin-san says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    You fail to understand a key point. Cops aren’t trained for “self-defense.” They are trained to confront and defeat opponents, not just to protect themselves.

    It has long since been established that you know nothing, repeat nothing about what happens in street level confrontations and fights. You also appear to know nothing about police work.

    Perhaps you should spend more time with “Ace” where you can safely claim expertise on matters you know nothing about.




    0



    0
  43. michael reynolds says:

    @JKB:

    Driving away with a person in the window is not an action in accordance with policy and would only have resulted in accusations of excessive force and wrongful endangerment as people witnessed it.

    Right. As opposed to shooting him to death. So he had to shoot him and kill him to avoid being accused of excessive force.

    Really, do you even listen to yourself?




    0



    0
  44. MikeSJ says:

    People seem to be missing a key factor here. Brown was 6’4″ and 290 pounds.

    Have you ever been hit by someone who has ~100 pounds on you? I have. It was in a class and with headgear, gloves and body protection and they were nice guys who really didn’t want to hurt me.

    I ended up on the floor wondering what planet I was on.

    If Brown attacked the officer in his car (and don’t tell me Officer Wilson “pulled” him into the car because Wilson isn’t a circus strongman) he was not in a position to simply drive off because he was fending off an attack. If you don’t think this is the case go ahead and try it at home. Have a person who has 100+ pounds on you reaching into a car you are in beating on you and try to sit up and engage the car to drive off. Do understand any punch that connects will easily knock you out.

    The amount of fantasy thinking going on here is unbelievable to me.




    0



    0
  45. michael reynolds says:

    @Pinky:

    Pepper spray at a range of 1 foot. That’s a great way to gain control of a situation.

    As opposed to drawing a weapon from its holster at a range of one foot.




    0



    0
  46. LaMont says:

    Taken together, all of these tends to paint a far more complicated picture of what happened that afternoon….

    Doug,

    Any “story” can be framed well enough to make anything look more complicated, thereby, placing the incident in a new light. What bothers me is that we have had several witnesses that went public and a pair of unknowingly recorded contract workers all saying the same thing. Their stories all pretty much matched. It’s been over two months since the incident and now we are getting leaks of why different events might have occurred that seem to carefully side with Officer Wilson’s story but leaves open ended questions about why and when. I understand there are leaks and leaks typically create more questions than answers but you have got to step back and understand what the hell is going on here. The incident that was captured by video in South Carolina concerning the Police shooting of an unarmed black guy after asking him to retrieve his driver’s license was an uncomplicated incident. Yet, if a camera never existed and that officer’s account of what happened appeared to justify the shooting, we could have very well been bombarded with the same leaks, though very much framed in the officer’s favor, of actual events taken place months later. You are jumping into conclusions with limited information like everyone else except you choose to believe that which is likely not to have happened becuase you now deem it to be “complicated” rather than what likely has. That which is likely to have happen is framed by everything we know about trigger happy police officers toward black men, stereotyping, racial tensions, the militarization of the police force, several witnesses that went public whose stories were consistent to one another, and two contract workers describing the event that did not know or realize they were being recorded.




    0



    0
  47. anjin-san says:

    @Pinky:

    That’s a great way to gain control of a situation.

    Actually, it’s a lousy way to gain control of a situation. But it might be preferable to shooting someone dead.




    0



    0
  48. michael reynolds says:

    @MikeSJ:

    Yes, there is quite a bit of fantasy thinking. How hard can you punch someone through an open car window? How much advantage does your size contribute? In fact, Brown would have needed to be bent over fairly far, his reach would have been limited, and the officer could have stepped on the gas.

    But no, your solution makes much more sense: while in the midst of a physical altercation in close quarters, draw your weapon from its safety holster so that this overpowering youth can more easily take it from you with his superior size and strength.

    Of course. The answer is always shoot. Bang, bang. 21 times more likely if you’re black.




    0



    0
  49. Rafer Janders says:

    @JKB:

    In any case, a person is not required to exhaust a list of means before using deadly force to stop a threat if they have reasonable fear of death or serious bodily injury. They can simply use the force necessary to stop the threat by whatever means they are able to implement that force.

    Which pretty much sums up why American cops are so unprofessional and amateurish when compared with actually professional police forces. In 2011, police in the US killed 404 people, whereas by comparison police in England and Wales killed only two people in that same time period, and German police killed six.

    Now, of course , you have to adjust for population, but even if England/Wales and Germany were similarly sized as America the numbers would be 9 people kiilled by police in the UK, and 24 in Germany — which are both far, far lower than 404.

    American police are simply trigger-happy.Police in other nations seem to be able to exhaust a list of means before using deadly force to stop a threat if they have reasonable fear of death or serious bodily injury, and don’t simply use the force necessary to stop the threat by whatever means they are able to implement that force. (Again, by comparison, police in England and Wales fired their weapons only five — count ’em, five — times in all of 2011/2012.)




    0



    0
  50. Pinky says:

    @MikeSJ: You can’t pull someone into a car even if you’re the one who weighs 300 pounds. It’s a pain to get an envelope into a mailbox if you pulled in a little too far from the curb. Sitting down, pulling someone through a 3 square foot area at a 90-degree angle from your body? Good luck.




    0



    0
  51. anjin-san says:

    @MikeSJ:

    Have a person who has 100+ pounds on you reaching into a car

    The car has power windows. Rolling the sucker up on his arm(s) might just take the fight out of him.




    0



    0
  52. Pinky says:

    @anjin-san: No, it’s not. If you’re a police officer, and there’s a choice between disabling yourself and an attacker, or killing the attacker, I don’t see a real choice.




    0



    0
  53. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: Actually, neither one of us knows exactly what the officer had available to him. In recent years, pepper foams and gels have been replacing old school pepper sprays for exactly this reason – less dispersion, better targeting.

    So, when you said pepper spray, you really meant “pepper something” and we should all have known that you didn’t mean “spray” when you said “spray.”

    And just how well do all these wonderful inventions work when you’re grappling with someone inside a car, anyway? Please, enlighten all of us.




    0



    0
  54. stonetools says:

    @MikeSJ:

    Dude, everyone who testified agreed Brown fled from the car and was 75 feet away when he got shot.

    The amount of fantasy thinking going on here is unbelievable to me.

    If you are talking about the folks trying to concoct a justification for a cop shooting to death an unarmed man who was fleeing from him, I agree with you.
    Except no fantasy writer would ever create a story about a guy who ran 75 feet, turned around, then charged a man who was shooting at him with head lowered like a bull.
    No fantasy writer would ever come up with such a far-fetched scenario.




    0



    0
  55. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @michael reynolds: How hard can you punch someone through an open car window? How much advantage does your size contribute? In fact, Brown would have needed to be bent over fairly far, his reach would have been limited, and the officer could have stepped on the gas.

    The cop wasn’t in a car, he was in an SUV. They tend to be a lot higher off the ground than a car.




    0



    0
  56. Modulo Myself says:

    @MikeSJ:

    Wilson seems to be around 6′ 4″ or so. No way he’s under 220.

    Plus, if Brown was so vicious, why on the video of the convenience store robbery did he just push a guy? Was he saving all of his rage for an armed police officer?




    0



    0
  57. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @stonetools: f you are talking about the folks trying to concoct a justification for a cop shooting to death an unarmed man who was fleeing from him, I agree with you.

    Try to wrap your head around just one bit of reality: every single one of Brown’s gunshot wounds were from the front. Not a single one was from the rear.

    Was he running backwards at the time of the shooting?




    0



    0
  58. anjin-san says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    So, when you said pepper spray, you really meant “pepper something” and we should all have known that you didn’t mean “spray” when you said “spray.”

    So today you want to derail the thread with yet another pointless discussion about semantics, as opposed to tomorrow, when you will be complaining about other people hiding behind semantics.




    0



    0
  59. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: The car has power windows. Rolling the sucker up on his arm(s) might just take the fight out of him.

    Great tactic there. Power windows are slow. Also, if they were grappling for the gun (and assuming the cop was right-handed and had his gun on his right hip), Brown was most likely leaning into the vehicle, and the window would probably catch him in the chest.

    Any more incredibly stupid options you want to put forward? “Stepping on the gas” and “roll up the windows” seem as dumb as they could get, but I have faith you can find more.




    0



    0
  60. Rafer Janders says:

    @MikeSJ:

    Have you ever been hit by someone who has ~100 pounds on you? I have. It was in a class and with headgear, gloves and body protection and they were nice guys who really didn’t want to hurt me.

    Yes, I have. And it wasn’t in a class, and I didn’t have headgear, gloves and body protection on, and it was on the street, against a bad guy who wanted to hurt me.

    And guess what? I didn’t wind up killing him. Since he was 100 pounds heavier than me, he was also a lot fatter and slower, and after the first blows I was able to keep him at arm’s length until he was too exhaused to continue.

    So its seems like professional police officer Darren Wilson, armed with a gun, baton, pepper spray and cuffs, just wasn’t as competent at street fighting as an unarmed NYC lawyer….




    0



    0
  61. al-Ameda says:

    @bandit:

    It’s just such a sad day for the lunatic racist haters who make up the OTB comments circljerk that they just can’t accept the reality that their lies about Ferguson are just that. But they still have their seeping hatred and cognitive dissonance to hold onto. And their anti-depressants.

    Thanks for the insightful analysis; I always appreciate the viewpoint from the desultory, dyspeptic, dysfunctional, and delusional Right.




    0



    0
  62. Guarneri says:

    I think any fair minded person would have to conclude that Brown was pulled into the police car for the purpose of getting his blood inside the cop car and to place powder on his hands, all to cover up Wilson’s Fredoesque fumbling with his gun, which could get him demerit points.

    As for Browns intentions, the story of him attacking the cop is ridiculous. Why, whenever I knock off a convenience store I go to great lengths to keep a low profile. And I never worry about what the cop I see might think. You just Cool Hand Luke it. Surely Brown had done enough convenience store jobs to know the protocols.




    0



    0
  63. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: So fine. Go into detail about what pepper “spray” alternatives are available, and how well they’ll work when two men are grappling in the front seat of a running vehicle.

    Hey, I know! The cop could have whipped out his phaser, set it on stun, and knocked Brown out! Or pulled out his Neuralyzer, put on his sunglasses, and mindwiped him!




    0



    0
  64. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Rafer Janders: So its seems like professional police officer Darren Wilson, armed with a gun, baton, pepper spray and cuffs, just wasn’t as competent at street fighting as an unarmed NYC lawyer….

    And did you start that match while sitting in a running vehicle?




    0



    0
  65. stonetools says:

    A police officer, faced with confronting two people in a street altercation, will retreat if he can and call for backup. That’s how they’re trained. Once he is in a position of safety, he can pursue the offender.
    The best option for Wilson would have been to close the door, call for backup, then pursue Brown in the car, broadcasting his position to all units responding. The responding units, on his instruction, would try to box in Brown and then one or two persons would have chased him on foot while the others remained in their cars and tried to cut off avenues of escape. That would be optimal procedure for pursuing someone who is fleeing on foot.
    Shooting a fleeing unarmed person isn’t procedure, unless he poses a threat to himself or a civilian.




    0



    0
  66. MikeSJ says:

    I think some valid objections are above but per Officer Wilson, Brown was attacking him through the window. At that point how far back was Wilson pushed? In that circumstance could he physically reach the window while fending off an attack? Could he engage the car to Drive and sit up to steer?

    The officer, if he was getting punched and scratched by someone that size, in my opinion, probably couldn’t.

    Remember, Reasonable Doubt.




    0



    0
  67. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @stonetools: A police officer, faced with confronting two people in a street altercation, will retreat if he can and call for backup.

    Which has squat to do with the situation at hand. The police officer saw two guys walking down the middle of the street, and told them to get out of the street. There was no “altercation” until Brown allegedly attacked the cop.

    So why did you kill all those pixels on a completely irrelevant element? If you’re going to lecture us about totally irrelevant material, at least make it interesting…




    0



    0
  68. anjin-san says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Power windows are slow.

    I don’t know what you drive, but the windows in my car would actually be pretty effective. If someone was reaching into my car and I did not like it this would be a viable option. Stepping on the gas might well be effective too, just a short burst – enough to take you 10 feet or so – would probably take the attacker off his feet and/or disengage him from the vehicle. There is no rule that says a cop can’t make a tactical retreat in a violent encounter, especially if he gains an advantage by doing so.

    Dude, I used to work in a job where personal safety and self-defense was an issue. I’ve been behind the wheel of a car in a parking lot where people were trying to prevent us from leaving. I’ve grappled up close and personal with guys who wanted to hurt me. And i’ve trained with people who have actually killed someone.

    Find yourself some some good cop movies to watch. You won’t embarrass yourself, and you won’t annoy anyone else.




    0



    0
  69. stonetools says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    He was certainly running. How did he end up 75 feet from the car? Teleportation?




    0



    0
  70. Modulo Myself says:

    @MikeSJ:

    Reasonable doubt? What are you talking about? Brown was shot at many times outside the car. He was killed at a distance, while unarmed, and after being hit several times.

    We have no record that Wilson was injured, but what if his nose was broken inside the car? Does he get to fire at Brown while Brown flees, and then shoot him again when he turns around? I get the sense that some people believe an angry cop gets a five-minute window to extract vengeance.




    0



    0
  71. stonetools says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    And afterthe “alleged attack”, Brown ran. There is no doubt whatever about that. So why didn’t Wilson remain in the car and call for back up?




    0



    0
  72. beth says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: Are you really trying to get us to believe that proper police procedure would be for an officer to run after and try to subdue the two men on his own? You’ve been watching too many Die Hard movies. Like I said before, I make no judgment about what happened at the car but once Brown was shot and running away, Wilson showed horrible judgment and even worse police procedure.




    0



    0
  73. Modulo Myself says:

    Honestly, the argument is basically that a black person who shows disrespect to a white cop gets what he deserves.




    0



    0
  74. anjin-san says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Power windows are slow.

    Ah. So if this is the case, Brown would have time to pull back from the SUV and disengage. Which is, as it happens, exactly what a cop in these circumstances would want him to do.




    0



    0
  75. Modulo Myself says:

    More importantly, there’s no response to the fact that Wilson shot and killed an unarmed suspect that a witness described as staggering forward after being shot. None. Nor is there a response to the fact that Wilson claimed that Brown charged him, which is definitely not staggering forward. If Wilson’s lying in his grand jury testimony, isn’t that a big deal?

    Instead, people are revealing their own psyches and fear; once something happens to you that you don’t like, you get freedom to do whatever you want. If that means firing two shots into a wounded suspect, simply because, then you get that; no questions asked.




    0



    0
  76. Gustopher says:

    The final thing to keep in mind, of course, is that the leaks that are coming out are selective leaks coming from sources that are trying to push public opinion on the case in one direction or the other.

    That really should be the first thing to keep in mind, not the final.

    And, given the track record of the local police, how can we trust them at all? They serve and protect themselves, not their community.




    0



    0
  77. MikeSJ says:

    @Modulo Myself:

    Reasonable doubt? What are you talking about? Brown was shot at many times outside the car. He was killed at a distance, while unarmed, and after being hit several times.

    IF Brown was advancing on Officer Wilson and IF he did not stop after being told to do so which is what the leaks indicate then the Officer could claim he was in fear of his life and yep, there’s the reasonable doubt.




    0



    0
  78. MikeSJ says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    And guess what? I didn’t wind up killing him. Since he was 100 pounds heavier than me, he was also a lot fatter and slower, and after the first blows I was able to keep him at arm’s length until he was too exhaused to continue.

    Rafer,

    A. I don’t doubt you are a better fighter than me.

    B. They weren’t slow and fat in my case.

    C. If you immobile and had to fend off the attack I think it would be much harder to deal with.




    0



    0
  79. stonetools says:

    As to grand jury procedure:

    More than a month after Brown’s death in Ferguson, Mo., the grand jury appears to be nowhere near a decision on whether Wilson should be charged. And the road to justice has been paved with strange decisions.

    Several elements of the grand jury’s proceedings have been uncommon, according to legal experts surveyed by TIME. None of these decisions are necessarily improper. But together they have raised eyebrows. “This is not your regular St. Louis grand jury case,” says Susan McGraugh, a veteran Missouri criminal-defense attorney and law professor at St. Louis University….

    The first unusual decision taken by the prosecutor’s office, experts say, was not to recommend a specific charge for Wilson. Instead, the prosecutors are presenting evidence as it becomes available, and leaving it up to the grand jury to decide what the evidence warrants.
    To some members of the community, the decision was taken as a sign that McCulloch may be trying to avoid an indictment. “To present a case to a grand jury, without any direction or instructions with regard to what you want them to achieve,” says Adolphus Pruitt of the St. Louis NAACP, “gives the best odds that an indictment will not occur.”

    A grand jury is generally a brief process over which the prosecutor has complete control. Proverbially, a grand jury can indict a ham sandwich. There is a heckuvalot about this grand jury that indicates that they aren’t pressing for an indictment here, and frankly, I have no hope they will indict. I’m relying on the feds for justice here.




    0



    0
  80. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    Let’s get a few stupid and totally irrelevant things out of this discussion. Namely, Wilson’s access to handcuffs, pepper spray, and a baton.

    The fight took place while Wilson was in his SUV. The value of a baton or pepper spray in such a contained place is zero to negative. And handcuffs are good for maintaining control, not for establishing control.

    Now as for the “Brown was too tall to punch in the window” argument: the pictures I’ve checked indicate that Wilson’s vehicle was a 4th-generation Ford Explorer. Those have a height between 71.2 inches and 72.8 inches. Brown was 76 inches tall. A rough estimate puts his shoulder right around driver’s head level. (It might be a Chevy Tahoe, which is even taller, at 74.6″ to 77″. That would make it even easier for Brown to punch into the vehicle.)

    One more point: I am ASSUMING that at the time of the struggle, Wilson’s vehicle was running and in gear, with his foot on the brake. This is how I normally engage in brief conversations with someone outside my vehicle. I also have my seat belt on, but we’ll leave that one at 50/50. I am ASSUMING that Wilson would not shut off his engine, as it would be pointless for a brief discussion, and I am ASSUMING that it was in gear, as that would also be more practical for a brief discussion. Yes, Wilson could have been unbuckled, in park, with the engine off, but I personally find those unlikely.




    0



    0
  81. Modulo Myself says:

    @MikeSJ:

    The only leak that says anything is the one that says Brown staggered forward after being commanded to stop.

    If an unarmed man you have shot is staggering forward in your direction, with his arms out in disbelief, what threat does he present? Is it reasonable to claim that you are in fear for your life? Perhaps the reason he did not stop when told was that he was shot, and in shock. Also, if this is what happened, then why does Wilson say he shot Brown as he charged, except to cover up the fact that he shot a defenseless wounded person who did not represent a threat?




    0



    0
  82. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @stonetools: I’m relying on the feds for justice here.

    You’re hoping for Eric Holder’s Justice Department to bring “justice?”

    Just what facts do you have that indicate that “justice” would mean the cop gets convicted of anything?

    It must be fun being a cop these days. As Brown approaches Wilson, the cop must be thinking: “Do I assume he’s going to attack me and be called racist, or assume he’s not going to attack me and be called naive?”




    0



    0
  83. anjin-san says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    I’m ASSUMING

    Yes. You are making assumptions that support the world as you see it, the world where young black men, apparently driven by pot and the urge to violence that is inherent in black folks, go into a killing rage at the drop of a hat.

    We pretty much already knew this…




    0



    0
  84. stonetools says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Poor Wilson. What a tragedy it is that he may be called to account for shooting to death an unarmed black man. Whatever is the country coming to? Why, it’s almost as if the country doesn’t stand for the unquestioned supremacy of the white man and police officers any more….




    0



    0
  85. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Modulo Myself: All of Brown’s injuries were from the front, with the possible exception of the fatal shot, which was from “above.” This is consistent with Brown either charging forward or stumbling forward — the key word in each case is “forward.”

    I’m no expert, but I’ve always heard that once you start shooting, you keep shooting until the other person is no longer posing a threat. If they are still moving towards you, they are a still potential threat.

    The cop was also firing quickly. He didn’t pause between each shot for a second or two to see how things are going. He was apparently shooting until Brown was clearly no longer a threat.

    And here’s something ugly that people don’t like to mention: if a cop is justified in shooting, he’s justified in killing.

    And here’s another point:

    Perhaps the reason he did not stop when told was that he was shot, and in shock.

    The cop was, by his story, just punched in the face very hard, engaged in a life-or-death struggle inside his cruiser, and had his gun go off inside the car. Then he had the fleeing suspect turn and charge back at him. I think “shock” might be a possibility for him, too.




    0



    0
  86. JKB says:

    @stonetools:

    Perhaps that would have happened but there is no safe way to retreat when you are trapped in a car with two individuals attacking you through the window. And no, he couldn’t try to drive off without endangering others as he would not have had full control of the vehicle.

    And when they went for his gun, he had an imminent threat as it is reasonable to believe that had they gotten control of the gun, Wilson would have been killed or seriously injured. Remember, Brown and Johnson are at that moment perpetrating a violent felony.

    After they broke contact, Wilson, a police officer, sought to pursue them. He commanded them to stop. Brown turned and is reportedly to have charged at Wilson or moved in Wilson’s direction as to give him that reasonable impression. Wilson having just survived a violent felony had a reasonable belief that this large individual charging toward him, would again batter him, and already injured, he had a reasonable belief such an act was an imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury.

    An as Brown ended up 35 feet from the cruiser (I have seen Wilson’s distance from the cruiser when he fired the final shots), your 75 where he was shot means Brown moved 40 feet toward Wilson after being shot but before the final shot stopped his threat to Wilson.




    0



    0
  87. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: Yes, I’m assuming. And I’m spelling out why I’m assuming those things, while granting the possibility I might be wrong. I’m stopping well short of the “it’s inconceivable that it could have happened any other way” standard.

    I’m still waiting for you to expand and expound on the merits of using various pepper-based products in the enclosed space of a police cruiser, and the usefulness of a several-foot-long baton in the same confined area…




    0



    0
  88. John425 says:

    @anjin-san: If anjinsan would drop his leftist talking points for a minute he’d consider how the police officer would manage to get to the pepper spray, taser or baton while being seated? Ever try to get your wallet out while seated? Moron.




    0



    0
  89. Rafer Janders says:

    @JKB:

    Perhaps that would have happened but there is no safe way to retreat when you are trapped in a car with two individuals attacking you through the window.

    Trapped! Trapped in a car, helpelss against two men on foot, your only protection several thousand pounds of steel SUV and the abiltiy to drive off at speed in one second!

    And no, he couldn’t try to drive off without endangering others as he would not have had full control of the vehicle.

    Nonsense. Complete and total nonsense. We aren’t Fox viewers here, you know. If you actually want to convince us, you have to actually present a credible, real-life scenario, not one in which the mere act of putting your foot to the pedal for a few seconds will result in the car setting off on an uncontrollable death-ride.




    0



    0
  90. stonetools says:

    Perhaps that would have happened but there is no safe way to retreat when you are trapped in a car with two individuals attacking you through the window.

    Maybe so, but there is no evidence whatsover that it happened that way, so no need to further speculate about that scenario. I’m not surprised that you concocted the notion that the second person stopped “attacked” Wilson , since the facts as we have them don’t support the conclusion that Officer Wilson justifiably shot Brown to death.
    If I had to make a case for Wilson, I’d be adding made up facts too.




    0



    0
  91. stonetools says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    And here’s something ugly that people don’t like to mention: if a cop is justified in shooting, he’s justified in killing.

    {Citation needed}




    0



    0
  92. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @stonetools: Maybe so, but there is no evidence whatsover that it happened that way, so no need to further speculate about that scenario.

    “No evidence,” that is, if you conveniently forget key facts:

    1) The cop was injured in a struggle.

    2) The cop’s gun went off inside the vehicle.

    3) Brown was shot in the hand inside the vehicle.

    Yeah, once you put all those inconvenient facts out of mind, it’s real simple, isn’t it?




    0



    0
  93. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @stonetools: Feel free to concoct a scenario where a cop is justified in shooting a suspect, but not in killing the suspect.

    “Shoot to wound” or “shoot to disarm” is a fantasy. You shoot to stop.




    0



    0
  94. Slugger says:

    I do not know what really happened. None of the commentators have more information, but I will grant that many are able to generate very plausible hypothese. I do think that there is more than a tiny likelihood that selective leaking of information is motivated by urges other than a dispassionate search for truth and justice.
    I wish that if I’m ever in a difficult situation it will be investigated by my friends and brothers.




    0



    0
  95. Modulo Myself says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Well, he did pause, because in that audio you can hear several clusters of shots, which corresponds to what the leaked witness says, who also calls it murder.

    Also, what possible reason would Brown have to start fleeing after being shot in the hand and then turn around so to attack Wilson? There’s no reason. It makes no sense. If the cops would have planted a gun in his hand, you’d be arguing that all of a sudden he remembered he was carrying a weapon.

    The minute he turned around, Wilson proved he was a total moron, terrified out of his mind, who shot someone with their arms out, if not up, or a vicious person who did this in cold blood.




    0



    0
  96. JKB says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Well, as Wilson was getting out of the vehicle when Brown shoved the door closed on him, it is reasonable to presume the truck was in park.

    And you are advocating that the officer put the public at risk of an out of control vehicle instead of using his self defense tool, firearm, to engage the direct, imminent threat of two violent individuals attacking through the window.

    But to no matter, as the discharges of the officer’s firearm did cause Brown and Johnson to break contact. There are no reports of anyone else being injured by those discharges, besides Brown. And those discharges are justifiable as self defense, whereas striking someone with the vehicle would not be. Don’t blame me, blame the lawyers who have developed a long case history on police actions.

    Now, we have the end of the initial self defense situation. The officer exits the vehicle to pursue the perpetrators of the felony he not only witnessed but experienced as is his job. He ordered them to stop. Brown reportedly moved back toward the officer. The officer has a reasonable fear that this individual is an imminent threat due to the just prior assault and his refusal to obey a lawful police order, namely to stop. Now this is self defense situation number 2 and the one where we will look to see if the officer had justification to use deadly force to stop what he reasonably feared was an imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury. Did he? We don’t have all the information the Grand Jury is considering but it does appear he my have justification for the use of deadly force at least looking at the information now public.

    So everyone should prepare for just such an outcome. Or perhaps they do indict on some minor charge given the complexity of the incidents.




    0



    0
  97. Modulo Myself says:

    I’m curious how Wilson’s defenders deal with the fact that numerous witnesses, including two people who saw the shooting and were recorded right after it, said that Brown had his arms up. Were they mistaken? Lying? If they were mistaken, what did they see that suggested to them his arms were up?




    0



    0
  98. stonetools says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Feel free to concoct a scenario where a cop is justified in shooting a suspect, but not in killing the suspect.

    “Shoot to wound” or “shoot to disarm” is a fantasy. You shoot to stop.

    Again, citation needed. You have made an absolute claim about this. Back it up witth a cited authority. Since you seem so clear about it, you surely have plenty of authority to support your claim. Go ahead, I’ll wait.




    0



    0
  99. anjin-san says:

    @John425:

    I’ve already detailed what I think the best course of action would be. Roll up the window. He would either draw back quickly, disengaging himself from the SUV, which is what the cop wants, or have his arm(s) pinned.

    So now his arm(s) is pinned and his freedom of action is severely limited. Drive 10 or 20 feet. Even at a low speed this takes him off his feet. Now he is at a severe disadvantage.

    Suggested reading “The Deadlier Weapon” by Larry Niven.




    0



    0
  100. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Modulo Myself: I’m curious how Wilson’s defenders deal with the fact that numerous witnesses, including two people who saw the shooting and were recorded right after it, said that Brown had his arms up. Were they mistaken? Lying? If they were mistaken, what did they see that suggested to them his arms were up?

    Because the autopsy shows that his arms were NOT up when he was shot. The bullet paths make NO sense if his arms were up, and line up quite nicely if his arms were in front of him.

    You wanna put your stock in the witnesses who also say that Brown was shot in the back, while fleeing, or in the actual physical evidence?




    0



    0
  101. stonetools says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    All of Brown’s injuries were from the front, with the possible exception of the fatal shot, which was from “above.” This is consistent with Brown either charging forward or stumbling forward — the key word in each case is “forward.”

    Its also consistient with Scott shooting Brown dead as he tried to surrender. Either way, it sounds like something best tried in open court, rather in a grand jury proceeding. Sounds to me like the best solution should be that Wilson should be charged and tried in open court-something which have certainly happened had the situation been reversed and Brown shot Wilson.




    0



    0
  102. anjin-san says:

    @John425:

    Ever try to get your wallet out while seated?

    Actually I don’t sit on my wallet. When I am driving, I keep it on the center counsel where it is easily accessible. I also have my phone in a cradle where it is easily accessible. I’m a big fan of having things I might need handy and easy to get to.




    0



    0
  103. Modulo Myself says:

    @JKB:

    You do realize that you are reciting Wilson’s version of events. Like not everybody thinks he just came out of his car; one witness says he slammed the car door into Brown and his friend. Well, who do you believe? I personally don’t know: the witness who said this was Brown’s friend, so he may have reason to lie, but so does Wilson.

    The same goes with the final moments. Does Wilson say that Brown had his hands up or out? No, he says Brown charged him. Well, who do you believe? Witnesses get things wrong, but Wilson’s testimony is just as questionable as anyone else, since has a reason not to tell the truth.

    I don’t know what happened. But it would be weird to take as gospel the account of someone under investigation by a grand jury when that account is being contradicted by numerous other witnesses. If there would no other witnesses, then his story might sound fishy, but it’s also the only account. That’s not the case. There are witnesses. Why is it you seem incapable of working these possibilities into your reality? The obvious answer is that you desperately want this officer to go free, and you have no desire to listen to what these witnesses have to say.




    0



    0
  104. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: I’ve already detailed what I think the best course of action would be. Roll up the window. He would either draw back quickly, disengaging himself from the SUV, which is what the cop wants, or have his arm(s) pinned.

    Brown got his hands on Wilson’s gun. Just how long were Wilson’s arms? I already spelled out how it is far more likely that Brown had his whole upper body in the vehicle, not just his arms, and therefore a rising window would have had to essentially lift a 300-lb. man off the ground.

    Try to come up with a scenario that isn’t just stupid, but mind-bogglingly stupid.




    0



    0
  105. anjin-san says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Because the autopsy shows that his arms were NOT up when he was shot. The bullet paths make NO sense if his arms were up, and line up quite nicely if his arms were in front of him.

    Perhaps you can tell us the total number of autopsies you have read in your life, and what you forensic and ballistics training is.




    0



    0
  106. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: I’ve already detailed what I think the best course of action would be. Roll up the window. He would either draw back quickly, disengaging himself from the SUV, which is what the cop wants, or have his arm(s) pinned.

    A few more problems with the “roll up the windows and drive along” idea.

    1) This assumes that the engine is running. Power windows don’t work when the engine is off.

    2) At what point during the struggle over the gun with a bigger and stronger opponent should Wilson take a hand away from his gun and fumble for a window switch?




    0



    0
  107. Jack says:

    @anjin-san: You do not use pepper spray in an enclosed space which then might cause the user to succumb to the effects. That’s just dumb. From the reports I’ve seen, the baton was on the back of his belt so effectively he was sitting on it. The cops in Ferguson do/did not have tazers.

    “In interviews with The Washington Post, sources said blood spatter evidence shows that Brown was heading toward the officer during their face-off, but analysis of the evidence did not reveal how fast Brown was moving.”

    The officer said he reached for his gun to defend himself, but Brown grabbed it and let go only after it fired twice. Two casings from Wilson’s gun were recovered from the police SUV, the sources said.

    The source also told the newspaper that Wilson told jurors he was trapped in the front seat and could not use his pepper spray to subdue Brown because the officer would have also incapacitated himself. His baton was also out of reach, at the back of his utility belt, pinned between his body and the seat. He also did not have a stun gun, so he drew his gun, the Post-Dispatch reported.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/new-evidence-supports-officers-account-of-shooting-in-ferguson/2014/10/22/cf38c7b4-5964-11e4-bd61-346aee66ba29_story.html




    0



    0
  108. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: Perhaps you can tell us the total number of autopsies you have read in your life, and what you forensic and ballistics training is.

    It’s called “being able to read.” Give it a try some time.

    She said Brown was facing Wilson when Brown took a shot to the forehead, two shots to the chest and a shot to the upper right arm. The wound to the top of Brown’s head would indicate he was falling forward or in a lunging position toward the shooter; the shot was instantly fatal. A sixth shot that hit the forearm traveled from the back of the arm to the inner arm, which means Brown’s palms could not have been facing Wilson, as some witnesses have said, Melinek said. That trajectory shows Brown probably was not taking a standard surrender position with arms above the shoulders and palms out when he was hit, she said.”




    0



    0
  109. Rafer Janders says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Feel free to concoct a scenario where a cop is justified in shooting a suspect, but not in killing the suspect.

    Here’s one: a policeman is engaged in a struggle with an attacker armed with a knife. The attacker tried to stab the cop but the cop shoots the attacker first. The attacker then drops the knife, puts his hand up in surrender, and then staggers backwards in wounded retreat. The cop now shoots again, killling him.

    Justified in the first shot, not justified in the second, deadly shot.




    0



    0
  110. stonetools says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Because the autopsy shows that his arms were NOT up when he was shot.

    {Citation needed}

    The last I heard from the medical examiner was that her conclusions were partial . And there is this:

    A medical examiner says results from the autopsy on Michael Brown, the teen killed by a police officer in Ferguson, Mo., shows that Brown was shot at close range, but cannot show whether he was trying to get the officer’s gun at the time.

    St. Louis city medical examiner Michael Graham, who was not involved in the autopsy, told The Associated Press that he could not say whether Brown was killed while confronting Officer Darren Wilson or as he was fleeing from him.

    Seems to me that you are desperately trying to build a case based on conservative assumptions about inconclusive forensic evidence. But again, you can post some supporting links.




    0



    0
  111. Modulo Myself says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:


    She said Brown was facing Wilson when Brown took a shot to the forehead, two shots to the chest and a shot to the upper right arm. The wound to the top of Brown’s head would indicate he was falling forward or in a lunging position toward the shooter; the shot was instantly fatal. A sixth shot that hit the forearm traveled from the back of the arm to the inner arm, which means Brown’s palms could not have been facing Wilson, as some witnesses have said, Melinek said. That trajectory shows Brown probably was not taking a standard surrender position with arms above the shoulders and palms out when he was hit, she said.

    He was shot in the body and the arm five times while facing Wilson at a distance of 20 to 25 feet. The final shot, according to this write-up, indicates that he was falling or lunging forward. Now, after being shot twice in the chest, can we conclude that he was falling forward because he was severly wounded? Maybe. I don’t know a thing about forensics. That’s for the trial.

    But there’s nothing in these shots that indicates whether or not his arms were up. If the autopsy is to be trusted, the sixth shot hit him in a way that would not happen had his arms been up. But there’s nothing scientific ruling out the fact that after he was shot in the arm, he put his arms up.

    So you have no reason to discount the witnesses.

    Glad to be of service.




    0



    0
  112. anjin-san says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    and therefore a rising window would have had to essentially lift a 300-lb. man off the ground.

    Nope. All is has to do is restrict his mobility. In the process, it would probably hurt a bit an possibly impact his breath.

    I don’t give a crap if Brown weighed 500 pounds. Or 1000. Pin him with the window, engage the throttle, and his body will move. Even without stepping on the gas, you have restricted his mobility, which is absolutely an advantage in a fight.




    0



    0
  113. anjin-san says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    This assumes that the engine is running

    Dude that’s an assumption you have already made.




    0



    0
  114. Jack says:

    @stonetools: The autopsy has proven, beyond any doubt, that Officer Wilson never shot Mike Browns in the back.

    You are as bad as the media, continuing to spout lies.




    0



    0
  115. anjin-san says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    It’s called “being able to read.”

    So you are saying that we know anything we read in the Washington Post must be true and accurate?

    I see.

    Hey, i spent thirty second reading something on the internet. I’m an expert.




    0



    0
  116. Jack says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    And guess what? I didn’t wind up killing him. Since he was 100 pounds heavier than me, he was also a lot fatter and slower, and after the first blows I was able to keep him at arm’s length until he was too exhaused to continue.

    My guess is you were also not belted into a small, enclosed space while your attacker wailed upon you.




    0



    0
  117. C. Clavin says:

    Lot’s of keyboard commandos here.
    You make me laugh.




    0



    0
  118. David M says:

    Why does anyone care what happened in the car? It’s the unarmed man being killed for not properly respecting the police that should bother people.

    I seem to remember another young unarmed man being murdered recently, and the same people were OK with it. I wonder why that is?




    0



    0
  119. Rafer Janders says:

    @Jack:

    My guess is you were also not belted into a small, enclosed space while your attacker wailed upon you.

    You are correct that I was not sealed inside a locked SUV that I could have driven off in at any time.




    0



    0
  120. Modulo Myself says:

    @C. Clavin:

    Well, it’s funny but kind of an embarrassment for a place like St Louis to have a bunch of Fox News Obama-haters deciding the fate of anyone. Imagine twelve people who have theories about Benghazi trying to piece together anything real. God knows how crazy this prosecutor is, or what he might say when the case is over. And for all we know, this cop could be another George Zimmerman, 24/7 living proof after the trial of all that was assumed about him.




    0



    0
  121. anjin-san says:

    the same people were OK with it. I wonder why that is?

    And they were willing to construct endless chains of pretzel logic to show show why the conclusion “unarmed black kid dead on the ground” was A OK.




    0



    0
  122. Grewgills says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: @JKB: @Pinky: etc
    It looks like there was an initial confrontation in the cruiser where Brown was shot once. After that Brown fled and put 20-30 feet between him and officer Wilson. At that point a taser or pepper spray becomes an effective nonlethal alternative to a gun. That is what is being pointed out here. People aren’t saying Wilson should have sprayed Brown when he was in the car as you and others seem to be (deliberately?) misconstruing, rather when there was distance between the two nonlethal methods should have been chosen.




    0



    0
  123. Tyrell says:

    There could be some lesser charges such as excessive force, unintentional manslaughter, or not following proper procedures.
    I did not see any news about the demonstrators “confronting” the people trying to get to the Rams – Seahawks game. I don’t know why on earth they would single them out. It just don’t make sense.
    That could be counter productive to their cause. One thing that demonstrators, protestors, or marchers should always remember is to not do anything that could hurt their cause, such as blocking right of ways, littering, use of bad words in public including on signs, poor dress (the civil rights marchers always wore white shirts, ties, and coats). Also, watch out for traffic, have a water break, be respectful of all people, and have a set starting and stopping point.




    0



    0
  124. Gustopher says:

    I have zero faith in the St. Louis DA’s desire to bring Darren Warren to justice, if that’s where the facts lead. And, it would seem like the local community in Ferguson also has no faith in it.

    Rather than a campaign of selective leaks, and processes happening behind closed doors, we need an open, transparent process. The problems with the use of force in Ferguson, and the methods of policing, and the insanely militarized response, and the appearance of a cover up, are all much larger than this one dead kid (or thug, if that is your preference).

    Warren is a product of the department. He is not some bad apple, or special exception.

    I want the truth to come to light, and I don’t care of Warren walks free. I wouldn’t be deeply bothered if the DOJ ended up granting him immunity while investigating the department as a whole — compel him to testify in open-court, and to face cross examination, under oath, with the prospect of a perjury trial if he lies.




    0



    0
  125. al-Ameda says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    You’re hoping for Eric Holder’s Justice Department to bring “justice?”

    Just what facts do you have that indicate that “justice” would mean the cop gets convicted of anything?

    It must be fun being a cop these days. As Brown approaches Wilson, the cop must be thinking: “Do I assume he’s going to attack me and be called racist, or assume he’s not going to attack me and be called naive?”

    Well, George Zimmerman (who was fortunate to have no witnesses to the tragic series of events that he set in motion) apparently got justice from Eric Holder’s Justice Department. So why do you doubt the efficacy of Holder now?




    0



    0
  126. Eric Florack says:

    @Modulo Myself: It just has to be a cop who wants to kill a black punk.

    There. fixed that for you.

    Your preconceptions are in plain view.




    0



    0
  127. charles austin says:

    A couple of thoughts if I may:
    1. People coming down on either side of this seem to be awfully invested in a particular interpretation of events, seemingly regardless of the facts — only a few of which are in the public record and most of which we still do not know. I don’t particularly trust selectively leaked information nor do I trust discredited propaganda pushing any narrative about larger issues. People who just assume the cop is guilty because, you know, cop and white, are just as wrong as people who assume the cop was justified because, you know, thug and black.
    2. The leaked eyewitness testimony is conflicting and of noticeably less value than good forensic data in this case. The non-leaked eyewitness accounts aren’t taken under oath and reasonable people can reasonably question their veracity for a number of reasons. In fact, that is almost always true.
    3. It is amusing to me how much people think they know about St. Louis based on reporting about this incident, or more correctly reporting about certain aspects of this incident and some particular interpretations of its import.
    4. I don’t know who is doing the leaking, but I’d happily see them prosecuted if they are leaking grand jury testimony.
    5. Two wrongs will continue to not make a right.




    0



    0
  128. Lenoxus says:

    I hate to say it, but Jenos Idanian is right that shooting-to-wound is basically a myth, in the sense that no one, even an expert marksman, is or could be trained to use a gun to merely “disable” someone. It’s generally considered a bad idea to aim for extremities (as opposed to the body’s core) because they’re too small and move too fast. And it’s a bad idea to think you can point a gun at any part of someone and not be threatening their life.

    Note: I am not actually a gun expert or user of any kind; I’ve just picked this up from reading (and from finding no counterpoint from other gun experts; I’d be interested if any exists).

    But it doesn’t follow that Wilson had to use the gun at all, nor that he was obligated to continue firing once Brown was far away. (Equivalent to Rafer Janders’s knife scenario, apart from the ambiguity of Brown even posing a threat to begin with.) That, by the way, is the biggest part of the narrative I haven’t heard any Wilson-defenders explain at all. Did Brown take the lethal shot and then run/stagger back 70 feet?

    Modulo Myself was particularly insightful in saying:

    … people are revealing their own psyches and fear; once something happens to you that you don’t like, you get freedom to do whatever you want. If that means firing two shots into a wounded suspect, simply because, then you get that; no questions asked.

    It’s like they think Wilson’s only options are to kill Brown or, I dunno, “sing Kumbayah” or whatever today’s cliché is for the unmanliness of not-killing-people.

    So here we are, debating this. Why is this always a debate? Why does every black-man-shot-dead incident “polarize” the country? When, if ever, was the last time someone claimed self-defense for killing a black man, and conservatives didn’t reflexively take the killer’s side, albeit with the usual caveats about “not knowing the whole story”?

    It’s as if mass shootings always polarized us, not about gun control, but over whether the shooters had actually saved us all from well-disguised alien invaders — or at least, that the shooters are sometimes mistaken but not unreasonably so. That may sound severely exaggerated, but consider the unspoken implication of reflexively taking the side against the dead black man. That implication is — well, I’ll let Jenos tell us:

    “Negligent?” As in, let a black man get close enough to his cruiser to lunge through the window and grapple for his gun?

    Seriously, what’s the word “black” doing in that sentence? Try substituting “shirt-wearing” and we get a non-sequiter, but one that makes my point.

    When you consider the frequency of these events, even remaining “neutral” until the facts are in merely carries a milder version of the implication carried by always siding with the shooter, which is that there’s something unusually (almost supernaturally) dangerous about black men. The alternative is that there’s something that makes them be perceived that way. Which seems likelier?




    0



    0
  129. anjin-san says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    1) This assumes that the engine is running. Power windows don’t work when the engine is off.

    What do you drive, a Trabant? The windows on my 9 year old 350z do indeed work with the engine off. They also work with the key out of the ignition, as does the garage door opener.

    You should really, really pump the brakes a few times before you hit “post comment”




    0



    0
  130. Pinky says:

    @anjin-san: Mine don’t. Four years old.

    None of us know the details about the vehicle involved.




    0



    0
  131. anjin-san says:

    @Pinky:

    None of us know the details about the vehicle involved.

    Jenos flat out said that power windows don’t work with the engine off. I pointed out that that is not necessarily true.

    Funny that you take issue with my statement, which is accurate, and don’t seem to have a problem with his, which clearly is not.




    0



    0
  132. anjin-san says:

    @Pinky:

    None of us know the details about the vehicle involved.

    Well, apparently you friend Jenos does:

    the pictures I’ve checked indicate that Wilson’s vehicle was a 4th-generation Ford Explorer. Those have a height between 71.2 inches and 72.8 inches.

    That sounds like someone who is putting himself forth as something of an expert. Either that, or he as watched “My Cousin Vinny” too many times.




    0



    0
  133. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    Oh, dear. I made a wrong assumption in this whole story, and NOT ONE PERSON CAUGHT ME ON IT. And it’s a major one. Funny how many people who insist that I’m some kind of pathological liar who can never be trusted on anything totally trusted me when I made that error.

    And even more entertaining, I even linked to the correct account, yet no one else picked up on it — just me.

    Wilson reportedly told investigators that when he tried to get out of the vehicle, Brown slammed the door on him and punched him in the face. Wilson drew his weapon and a struggle ensued.

    So a lot of things I was speculating about are not really debatable in the officer’s account, which I had not recalled properly.

    –Wilson was obviously not belted in, as he was trying to get out of his vehicle.

    –Similarly, the vehicle was in park, and possibly with the engine off.

    –The window might have been up or down. If the two were struggling for the gun, then it’s probable that the window was down, but not stated.

    So Wilson was either pinned between the door and the vehicle, or forced back into his vehicle. In either case, the “should have used taser/pepper spray/baton” arguments are still invalid. And since Wilson was trying to get out of the vehicle, the “roll up the window and start driving” bullcrap is even more improbable. Now it involves one hand to find the window switch, and the other to (maybe) turn the key and shift into drive, while Brown is grabbing for Wilson’s gun.




    0



    0
  134. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: That sounds like someone who is putting himself forth as something of an expert. Either that, or he as watched “My Cousin Vinny” too many times.

    Christ, you’re worthless. I gave links — first to the picture, then to the Wikipedia entry on the vehicle. If you want a third link to the Tahoe? Here you go.

    That isn’t me saying I’m an expert. I put forth those links as a way of saying “here, check my work.” If I misidentified the vehicle, feel free to argue so. If I gave a wrong height for the vehicle, say so.

    Are you really so stupid that you are incapable of checking my links and seeing if I’m accurate? Or just that lazy?

    There’s no particular expertise in looking at photos of an SUV and making an educated guess as to its make and model. I’m comfortable with my saying it’s either an Explorer or a Tahoe, but if anyone wants to dispute that, I’m willing to listen. And if anyone has better figures on the heights of the respective vehicles or Mr. Brown’s height, go ahead.

    Just because you’re too lazy, too stupid, too cowardly, or some combination of the three to do a little homework and offer an opinion, that doesn’t make it a virtue. It doesn’t make you somehow superior to those who do.

    In fact, quite the opposite.




    0



    0
  135. JKB says:

    @C. Clavin: You make me laugh.

    It’s good you can laugh at yourself.




    0



    0
  136. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: I screwed up the block-quoting on my correction comment. Only the first blocked-out paragraph was a quote; the rest was me.

    How meta, that I made a mistake on a correction of a mistake…




    0



    0
  137. JKB says:

    @anjin-san: My Ford SUV windows only worked for a few moments after turning the ignition off. Plus they stopped working once you opened the door. The door Officer Wilson opened before Brown shoved it shut.




    0



    0
  138. anjin-san says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    So let’s see. If I point out that your claim that

    Power windows don’t work when the engine is off.

    Is simply not true, you are going to call me a whole lot of names, not just a few 🙂




    0



    0
  139. Grewgills says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    In either case, the “should have used taser/pepper spray/baton” arguments are still invalid.

    You are STILL not getting it. The BIG problem here is what happened AFTER the alleged struggle at the vehicle. By all accounts after the initial struggle in which it appears that Brown was shot once leaving some blood in the car and on the gun Brown retreated. There was more than 20 feet and maybe as much as 70 feet between Brown and officer Wilson when the rest of the shots were fired by Wilson. At this point there is no ”pinned in to the car” argument. There are two men, one of them unarmed and the other with a gun, pepper spray, taser and baton. Officer Wilson could have at that point chosen to use any of those weapons or he could have retreated to his vehicle and called for back up. He wasn’t in an immediate struggle. He could have easily utilized his taser or pepper spray. He could have done so using his vehicle as a shield if Brown was approaching. Out of those several options he chose to shoot an unarmed teen who had already been shot in the hand several more times. Keep in mind here too that being shot in the hand makes one a considerably less dangerous hand to hand combatant.




    0



    0
  140. anjin-san says:

    @JKB:

    Let me diagram it very simply for you. I am not claiming that every power window on every vehicle in the world works with the ignition off. I am simply saying that some do, hence making the claim “Power windows don’t work when the engine is off.” is making up a “fact” to support a self-serving conclusion that one has already reached.

    And with that, I am done with power windows.




    0



    0
  141. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Lenoxus: Seriously, what’s the word “black” doing in that sentence? Try substituting “shirt-wearing” and we get a non-sequiter, but one that makes my point.

    In all the arguments about how the shooting was unjustified, the races of the two parties is always mentioned, extremely prominently. It’s not “a cop shot an unarmed man,” but “a white cop shot an unarmed black man.” In confronting that argument, I used the grounds and language most commonly used.




    0



    0
  142. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: Let me diagram it very simply for you. I am not claiming that every power window on every vehicle in the world works with the ignition off. I am simply saying that some do, hence making the claim “Power windows don’t work when the engine is off.” is making up a “fact” to support a self-serving conclusion that one has already reached.

    And with that, I am done with power windows.

    So, you gonna completely retract your “why didn’t Wilson just roll up the windows and start driving” scenario?

    Nah, you’re “done” with it. Which means that you’re going to pretend that it never came up, and anyone else who brings it up is being boorish and obsessive and mean.




    0



    0
  143. anjin-san says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    So, you gonna completely retract your “why didn’t Wilson just roll up the windows and start driving” scenario?

    Nope.




    0



    0
  144. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Grewgills: I got hung up on the car part because that was where people were saying the most stupid things. But yeah, let’s move beyond that.

    According to Wilson’s story, Brown started running off after the scuffle at the car. At that point, Wilson isn’t just responding to a report of a crime, he isn’t even a witness to a crime, he is a direct participant and victim of a crime. It is his DUTY to stop Brown.

    (Again, we’re taking Brown’s story at face value. The reason I do this is because the first step is to look at Wilson’s story and see if we can find flaws in it. It’s hardly conclusive, but it’s a good starting point.)

    So he yells for Brown to stop. Brown turns and charges, so he starts shooting. Or, rather, resumes shooting. And he stops shooting when Brown stops.

    The witnesses? They said Brown was shot while running away. All the wounds were from the front.

    They say Brown had his hands up when shot. The one wound to Brown’s arm is from the front of the arm through the back of the arm, indicating that Brown’s palms were NOT turned toward Wilson.

    Wilson’s story is consistent with the physical evidence. The witness accounts are not.

    I’m not saying that Wilson acted properly. I’m saying that so far, the evidence is leaning in that direction.




    0



    0
  145. Pharoah Narim says:

    I think people are really missing the point of all this. Its not about Mike Brown or Wilson, they are pawns of a larger game played by the Jobs program known as the Prison Industrial Complex. This bloated industry needs funding to stay keep afloat and justify all the paychecks, fancy equipment, and luxurious courthouses that need supporting. Since we aren’t going to fund this beast with tax increases, the money has to come from somewhere. Hey! I know! Lets harass and nickle-and-dime the hell out of the poor minorities who don’t have any or enough representation to get a mayor or sheriff voted out of office. If they pay the fines we win….if they dont, we’ll throw them in jail and bill the taxpayers. Ferguson municipal has been getting a couple mil a year easy off their pigeo…..err citizens.

    What needs to happen is that people have to work for caps on how much money can be used by law enforcement and the judicial system from fines and court fees. Anything above the cap should go back into the community. If Ferguson was capped at 500K, how many years do you think they would have issued 2M worth of fines? I can tell you it would stop in a heartbeat. It would kill these clowns to have to spend a million+ in these communities because at their very core they may not be racists but they are white supremacists…and black communities are not supposed to be equal or better than white ones. So the harassment would stop because excessive harassment would mean improved parks, schools, and communities center in places where the people aren’t supposed to have anything anyway. It always comes back to money




    0



    0
  146. Hal_10000 says:

    I have said from the very beginning that Wilson would never be convicted and very likely wouldn’t even be indicted. We’ve seen two many cases like this where cops have shot unarmed men, beaten unarmed men to death or brutally assaulted unarmed men while shouting “stop resisting!” where either no indictment followed or a jury quickly acquitted. Abusive cops have unions on their side, pro-union Democrats on their side, law-and-order-with-a-beatdown Republicans and Democrats on their side, prosecutors on their side … the deck is simply stacked. Remember what happened in this case. No statement was taken from witness immediately. Wilson didn’t have to make an immediate statement. The ACLU was given a blank incident report. BS stuff about a “blowout orbital fracture” was circulated.

    Anyone can see what’s coming: no indictment.




    0



    0
  147. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: So it’s Plan B — you won’t talk about it at all.

    I suspect this is why you put such efforts into avoiding saying things of substance — you really, really suck at it. You say something that sounds good in your head, but falls apart when actually looked at. And then you have to defend what you said, which you suck at even more.

    Come on. I saw my error (before anyone else did), owned up to it, and corrected it. I believe that’s what is called “honesty.” Give it a try.

    For just once in your miserable, pathetic existence, show the slightest sign of testicular fortitude. Either stand up for your argument, or acknowledge that it was impractical and really, really stupid.




    0



    0
  148. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Pharoah Narim: @Hal_10000: So, in the interests of Greater Justice, Wilson should be sent to prison? Whether or not this particular shooting was justified, he should be punished for the sins of others? Is that what you’re arguing?




    0



    0
  149. anjin-san says:

    @Pharoah Narim:

    Its not about Mike Brown or Wilson, they are pawns of a larger game played by the Jobs program known as the Prison Industrial Complex.

    Bingo. And poor people get ground up by the machine every day.




    0



    0
  150. anjin-san says:

    I’m 55. When I was younger, I did pretty sketchy shit on a regular basis. Yet I never really had a problem with a cop that scared me. I was cut slack on many occasions, sometime a great deal of it. On two occasions when I had discussion with cops that got a little heated, I was never threatened, I never saw a hand go to a weapon.

    When I was 16, I got pulled over for the first time. I got a big adrenalin rush, jumped out of the car, and started towards the black and white to ask why I got pulled over. The cop simply raised his hand and said “slow down a bit there son.” He very patiently explained what I had done wrong, and said “Son, never jump out of your car if you get pulled over, it makes us nervous.” He was pretty cool about the whole thing.

    Well, I grew up in a nice area. Funny thing is, my black friends had experiences with the same cops that were not nearly as cordial.




    0



    0
  151. anjin-san says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    ZZZZZzzzz




    0



    0
  152. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: ZZZZZzzzz

    Funny, I had the same reaction at your saga of discovering your White Guilt and White Privilege, also known as Anjin Avoidance Tactic #3.




    0



    0
  153. Pharoah Narim says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: No….but the readers of this blog are continually punished by your lack or reading comprehension…why?!?!




    0



    0
  154. bill says:

    @Modulo Myself: sure, looting liquor stores/gas stations is how “civilized” people react to bad news…….
    the reality is that most people with a 3 digit iq knew the whole thing was another media fed frenzy to get low iq blacks on the tv- they can’t help themselves when the cameras are rolling for some reason.
    you dolts actually bought into the initial story that his accomplice threw out- that some angry white cop just pumped 6 holes into a sweet little teenager…for no reason at all.
    then you let the fact that he was actually a crook encourage your idiocy even more…..double downed on stupidity.
    and if most of you weren’t paying attention- the nyt actually leaked this stuff a few days ago, but nobody in here wanted any part of it.
    as the residents of ferguson already stated, he needs to go to jail or we’ll riot some more….and the white house has their backs as usual.
    in the meantime the crime rate in st louis is still horrible, and it ain’t white people shooting blacks….math is so hard.




    0



    0
  155. Grewgills says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    I’m not saying that Wilson acted properly. I’m saying that so far, the evidence is leaning in that direction.

    For the sake of argument I am going to take officer Wilson’s statement as to how the incident began as gospel. So we have an unarmed and injured teen at a distance of at least 25 feet from officer Wilson. Wilson says that teen was rushing towards him. He would have had to have started further away if we accept officer Wilson’s statement that Brown was rushing towards him as he died over 20 feet from the cruiser. Officer Wilson could at that point have used either of the non lethals he had in his possession to incapacitate Brown. He could have pepper sprayed him or tasered him. Instead he chose to shoot him repeatedly until he was dead. The final shot seems to have gone through the top of his head as he was collapsing. That you think this is acting properly is astounding to me. How on earth is that the right or reasonable thing to do. If officer Wilson’s account is truthful, I can understand making a rash decision in the cruiser. I think it was the wrong decision, but I can understand how it would happen. What happened after, if it isn’t illegal damn well should be.




    0



    0
  156. Grewgills says:

    Do any of the conservatives that are supporting officer Wilson’s position here want to call out bill on his racist screed, so you won’t be associated with it?




    0



    0
  157. Rozzie says:

    I just want to point out that browns body was actually about 100 feet away from the SUV. Brown and Wilson may have had 20-30 ft between them, but his body was 100ft away. this can be verified with google maps, or just type in browns body 100ft away and you will find a description. Who would run that far away only to run back? Beats me. Also, I find many flaws in wilsons story. For example, He said there was blood and glass everywhere. If brown pushed him back into his car, slammed the door, and punched him in his face, his window would have been down, so how was glass all over the place? If his window was up, there was no way for brown to touch him at all. If there is any doubt, look at pics of his SUV at the scene all windows are there except the driver side is not viewable, so only his driver side window could have broken, and if it was partly up, this would have made it even harder for brown to reach across wilson with his right hand and unholster his gun. Another thing, people seem to miss that the official autopsy states that there was a shot to browns forearm that was from BACK to FRONT. With the private 2nd autopsy parcells stated that there was a graze wound that could have hit brown from the back. THIS IS THE WOUND that hit him from the back and caused him to stop running in the first place. Also, wilson did fire at brown while he was running away. It was confirmed by law enforcement officials (dont believe me type in wilson shot at brown running away according to law enforcement officials). Also the chest wounds are in a downward position as well as the wound to the top of the head is in a downward position, according to autopsy. Sorry, but no one is going to lunge or charge from 25 feet away with their head down where they cant see with bullets hitting them. How could anyone think they would even reach someone from that many ft away with bullets being pumped into them? Brown was 6’4, impossible for wilson to shoot in a downward position from that height, he had to be falling forward. Also, the autopsy states cause of death was from wounds to head AND CHEST. Brown was probably already dying when shot in the chest. According to autopsy, his lung was punctured from the wound to the chest. Maybe he couldnt breathe, maybe he was in so much pain he couldnt just be perfectly still. Those bullet wounds caused fractures and tore through nerves, etc. Who could be perfectly still and not move knowing they are about to die, probably cant breath, and are in alot of pain? probably no one.




    0



    0
  158. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Rozzie: First up: PARAGRAPHS. Learn about them. Use them. They are your friends.

    Now for your points: the distance between Brown and Wilson. You cite witness reports, which have already been proven to be inconsistent with the physical evidence.

    The broken glass: you are aware that Wilson’s gun went off twice in the cruiser, right? Ya think that might break some glass?

    The arm wound: it travels from the back OF THE ARM to the front OF THE ARM, not back and front of the body. That means that the palm of that arm was facing away from the shooter.

    Finally, fatal wounds aren’t always instantly fatal. That’s a Hollywood myth. The final shot to the head stopped Brown, but without that shot he would have died from the chest wounds — just not as quickly.




    0



    0
  159. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Grewgills: Do any of the conservatives that are supporting officer Wilson’s position here want to call out bill on his racist screed, so you won’t be associated with it?

    1) I’m not defending Wilson’s position, I’m on the side of finding out the truth. I care about the facts. Right now, the facts support Wilson’s account, but that could change.

    2) I feel as much obligation to “call out” bill as you do to “call out” regular idiots wr and cliffy, among others, who routinely say equally vile things.

    3) I don’t particularly care whether certain idiots “associate” me with what bill said. I didn’t say them, and I didn’t speak in support of them. Nor will I. Those who would try to get me to go haring off on these stupid diversions are trying to push me on to the defensive and drag me off topic, and I’ve played that game too many times in the past.




    0



    0
  160. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Grewgills: Dude, you need to use paragraphs almost as much as Rozzie does.

    Let’s take that “25 feet” distance bit. I brought this up before — Mythbusters put this one to the test a while ago, and it doesn’t take much time for a highly motivated person to travel that far.

    Further, Wilson had his gun in hand. He did not have a taser or pepper spray in hand; he’d have had to holster the gun and draw the other weapon in very short time.




    0



    0
  161. Pinky says:

    @Grewgills: I’m not defending the police officer. As for Bill’s comments, here are the ones involving race:

    “frenzy to get low iq blacks on the tv- they can’t help themselves when the cameras are rolling for some reason”
    “some angry white cop”
    “the white house has their backs as usual”
    “it ain’t white people shooting blacks

    The first one could just barely be read as non-racist – anyone who’s ever seen Cops or Jerry Springer knows that low IQ people of all races act badly on TV. Was he singling out black people to be offensive? Of course. I can’t get that angry at him though, because it was an accurate description. There’s nothing in the rest that I have to denounce. Still, although I sometimes over-parse things, there’s no doubt that Bill was trying to be racially offensive, and he should be ashamed of that.




    0



    0
  162. Modulo Myself says:

    So let’s recap:

    1) Most of Wilson’s story is either contradicted by witnesses and is not supported by the autopsy (though not contradicted), while the middle part of Brown being shot in the car, fleeing, and then doing a U-turn around 25 feet or to charge an armed officer, is so unbelievable that no one can address how or why this would ever occur.

    2) We know this because Wilson’s defenders are incapable of explaining how this happened and instead are focusing on the kerning of events inside the car, and how much force a punch from a 300-pound guy contains, and how scary that is vs the punch of a 240-pound mortal.




    0



    0
  163. stonetools says:

    AAAND…

    The medical examiner whose report generated the OP’s headline has clarified what her analysis meant:


    Judy Melinek, one of the forensic experts who was quoted by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch on Tuesday about the Michael Brown autopsy report, is taking issue with how the newspaper portrayed her comments.

    The key piece of Melinek’s analysis, according to the Post-Dispatch’s original report, was that the report of Brown’s autopsy “supports the fact that this guy is reaching for the gun, if he has gunpowder particulate material in the wound. If he has his hand near the gun when it goes off, he’s going for the officer’s gun.”

    That would be consistent with Ferguson, Mo., police officer Darren Wilson’s version of events, as reported by the New York Times and others. Melinek was also paraphrased by the newspaper saying that the autopsy was inconsistent with witness accounts of Brown having his hands up in surrender when he was shot by Wilson.

    But Melinek told MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell on Wednesday that her comments had been taken “out of context” and that she believed the findings could be explained by other scenarios as well.

    “What happens sometimes is when you get interviewed and you have a long conversation with a journalist, they’re going to take things out of context,” she said. “I made it very clear that we only have partial information here. We don’t have the scene information. We don’t have the police investigation. We don’t have all the witness statements. And you can’t interpret autopsy findings in a vacuum.”

    In light of that, Jenos and Bill, who originally creamed their pants over finally having some favorable pro-Wilson info, should be walking back their pro-Wilson conclusions-if they had any intellectual integrity. We know the truth about that, though…




    0



    0
  164. stonetools says:
  165. LaMont says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    That means that the palm of that arm was facing away from the shooter.

    And how exactly does that refute what Rozzie said? If could confirm that the bullet hit him while running away from the officer. It could still fit what witnesses said about seeing Mike Brown suddenly stop – like he was shot, then turn around.

    And your response to the broken glass is kind of silly. You mention nothing refuting Rozzie’s point about how the glass was shattered.

    All this gets back to my prior point. Everyone is speculating on what might’ve happen given what we think we know. In my opinion, the reasonable speculation favors the side of Mike Brown and not officer Wilson’s. You are trying way too hard to explain his defense. Most times, what really happened is not as complicated as everyone is trying to make it.




    0



    0
  166. Pinky says:

    @anjin-san: @anjin-san:

    None of us know the details about the vehicle involved.

    Jenos flat out said that power windows don’t work with the engine off. I pointed out that that is not necessarily true.

    Funny that you take issue with my statement, which is accurate, and don’t seem to have a problem with his, which clearly is not.

    Of course I have a problem with his statement. I said that none of us know about the actual vehicle, neither you nor Jenos nor I. And I don’t have a problem with your statement. You were citing an example you know; I was citing a counter-example. I have no problem with the windows on your car. I’m happy for you (assuming you like power windows that operate when the car is off).

    But this goes to the real problem:

    None of us know the details about the vehicle involved.

    Well, apparently you friend Jenos does

    Why would you think we’re friends? I probably criticize him more often than I criticize anyone else on this site. But you seem to have this weird idea that this is about teams, and we have to protect our friends and attack our enemies, whatever the issue. I have no idea what happened during this shooting, and neither do you. We don’t even know what kind of power windows his car had. It’s idiotic to throw around accusations on the basis of a perceived win for your side, your “friends”. The fact that it’s about skin color just makes it grosser. Someone would have to have some kind of Eric Hofferian mental defect to define himself based on the supportive and unsupportive pixels on his screen.




    0



    0
  167. al-Ameda says:

    @bill:

    you dolts actually bought into the initial story that his accomplice threw out- that some angry white cop just pumped 6 holes into a sweet little teenager…for no reason at all.

    Bill, concerning this incident, do you actually think that – based on what we know today – that Brown deserved to killed? I continue to find it hard to believe that Wilson could not control that situation short of killing Brown.




    0



    0
  168. Kyle Stone says:

    Wilson’s Way (noun) defintion “Method for LEOs composing a Statement after a police involved shooting usually allowing the subject of the investigation full access to all eyewitnesses, forensics and autopsy reports prior to finalizing the Incident Report.”

    The media in general has been a very good friend to WIlson by permitting the transmission of blatantly false information and omissions, including the false claims the eyewitness reports are conflicting and that the autopsy does not line up with eyewitnesses.

    It is also very revealing how the latest leak somehow exonerates Wilson. All it proves is Brown was shot at close range. Surely other people have seen videos of cops committing shootings against young African Americans that were completely not justified.

    Probably the least discussed aspect on the MSM is how racism is a top tier factor in reviewing evidence. The eyewitnesses were never given much credibility until it was revealed two of them were Caucasian. In this latest leak it is claimed there are African American witnesses who support Wilson. Why not simply say “Witnesses?”




    0



    0
  169. bill says:

    @al-Ameda: oh no, i don’t think kids need to be killed- but we didn’t get much in the way of “facts” from the police. the crowd seemed to take his friends account verbatim and whipped the crowd into a frenzy. the media plays along for ratings and all of the sudden it’s back to the “trayvon martin” case. i’d like to see the various reports/witness statements and how they stack up to each other.
    the fact that the crowd has already threatened more rioting unless wilson is indicted has got to be troubling for most of us, right?




    0



    0
  170. Kyle Stone says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    What evidence do you possess that exonerates Wilson? We know from the evidence and witnesses Brown was fatally shot while unarmed and about 30 feet away from Wilson and obviously was not moving too fast dues to being shot a few times prior to the fatal shots.

    What is the specific evidence that deadly force was justified?




    0



    0
  171. Hal_10000 says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    No. I’m saying the way the system is set up, it acquits offers of wrong-doing in almost all circumstances. Wilson may be in the clear here. But there is not reason to believe that given what we have seen where police officers have gunned down clearly unarmed men on video and never been held accountable.




    0



    0
  172. Kyle Stone says:

    @bill:

    Apparently you are unaware the witnesses did not know each other and they are first hand witnesses who gave their accounts without consulting Johnson or each other.

    It is interesting your biggest concern is riots. For many of us it would make more sense to focus on the cause of the riots, excessive force, a police state, and numerous unjustified shootings between cops and civilians.

    The first step is to eliminate police patrols as they violate the 4th and require all uniformed LEO to wear 360 cams when on a service call.




    0



    0
  173. al-Ameda says:

    @bill:

    the fact that the crowd has already threatened more rioting unless wilson is indicted has got to be troubling for most of us, right?

    Riots? Can’t be a good thing, but entirely understandable. I do not think that Wilson will be tried and convicted of anything, even though I currently believe he used excessive force.

    Personally, I remember all the conservative predictions of race riots if the Zimmerman-Martin trial did not result in a guilty verdict – it never happened. We’ll see.




    0



    0
  174. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @stonetools: I went and read that article, and you’re seriously overhyping it.

    The doctor says that her report doesn’t prove Wilson’s story, but is consistent with it. Which is what I’ve been saying. She’s upset that some people are saying that her report proves Wilson’s story.

    This would be news if she had said that her report was inconsistent with Wilson’s story. But the gist of her complaint isn’t that her report is being lied about, but that it’s being overhyped.

    On a scale where “1” would be “proves Wilson’s story false” and “10” is “proves Wilson’s story is true,” her report is about a 7. Maybe an 8. The complaint is that some people are calling it a 9 or 10.




    0



    0
  175. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Hal_10000: I’m a big believer in individualism. I think that both Wilson and Brown deserve to have their case judged on its own merits, and don’t like Brown representing All Black Men, and Wilson representing All White Cops, where we look at The Big Picture and decide that since, overall, Black Men have been mistreated by White Cops, Wilson should be punished.

    Because that’s what’s being argued here. The putting of statistics ahead of evidence, trends ahead of facts. Every single person who is arguing The Big Picture and citing examples of other cases featuring innocent black men and bad white cops is pushing the narrative over the facts, and demanding that Wilson answer not for his actions, but those of those bad cops with whom he shares a profession and a skin tone.

    I don’t like collective punishment. I don’t like being held accountable for the actions of others (see above where I was asked to condemn bill or be considered to be in agreement with him), and I don’t like it when that is pushed against anyone else.




    0



    0
  176. LaMont says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    I think that both Wilson and Brown deserve to have their case judged on its own merits, and don’t like Brown representing All Black Men, and Wilson representing All White Cops, where we look at The Big Picture and decide that since, overall, Black Men have been mistreated by White Cops, Wilson should be punished.

    Who in the hell said Wilson SHOULD be punished? No one! All anyone that is protesting in Ferguson wants is an indictment so that Brown’s and Wilson’s case CAN be judged fairly. Now, we can agree that a trial should probably be given to appropriately divide the BS from the truth. Problem is, given what we know about black men and police officers, stereotypes, and police officer protection in light of these short-comings, this case may not even reach trial. You are delusional if you think that these outside factors are in no way playing a part in this fiasco as it is being developed. This situation did not and is not happening in a vacuum…




    0



    0
  177. MikeSJ says:

    If the facts don’t support an indictment or show enough reasonable doubt then there will not be an indictment by the Grand Jury.

    If there are witnesses that support Officer Wilsons recap that Brown was moving toward him I think reasonable doubt is introduced. If forensic evidence matches Wilsons story, again reasonable doubt.

    The only valid (in my opinion) question I’ve seen raised is why pepper spray wasn’t used when Brown turned and moved towards Officer Brown. (In his version of what happened.) I don’t know police procedures or what Officers are trained to do in that circumstance so I assume the Grand Jury is looking into that. I don’t believe the Office had a taser but I’m not positive on that point.

    The question was raised why Brown turned around and approached Officer Wilson? People do stupid and crazy things all the time. If the forensic evidence shows that Brown attacked Wilson in his car, well, that’s a pretty stupid and crazy thing to do for starters.

    If Brown was told to stop moving towards Officer Wilson the possibility exists that he couldn’t hear the command as a result of having a gun discharge near his face twice. (They are really loud) I don’t know if that is the case but it could be possible.




    0



    0
  178. LaMont says:

    @MikeSJ:

    I don’t know if that is the case but it could be possible.

    Exactly, it could be possible. And with everyhting that we know about the outside factors that are playing into this – that includes the DOJ’s concerns about how the police and the prosecutor’s office have been handling this case, this case should get to trial. Now what should happen and what is likely to happen can be totally different from one another. That is why they are protesting in Ferguson. If everyone was sure that this case would be handled with integrity then the protesting would’ve dried up after about a week. Yet, everything that has happened to date appears to confirmed the reason for the protesting in the beginning. Afircan Americans living in Ferguson are not dumb. They seen this coming from jumpstreet..




    0



    0
  179. Lenoxus says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: I had a feeling you would make this point, that those of us who assume this was unjust do frequently bring race up, so why can’t you? On the surface it looks like you have a case for inconsistency on my part.

    But the question is why race is brought up. For some of us, the point is to say that in a racist environment, white cops have a significant legal/political advantage over dead black men, which could in turn enable even more killings — not necessarily because the white cops are unusually racist, but because the message is that they don’t have to worry about being tried and found guilty.

    In that sentence, what exactly are you saying by mentioning Brown’s race, in a sentence meant to emphasize why it’s unreasonable to expect Wilson to resort to non-gun methods of self-defense? For example, here’s some words I can put in your mouth: perhaps you’re saying that being black would have made Brown seem more threatening to Wilson thanks to a racist environment, so if we truly want to judge Wilson’s actions, we have to consider that perspective. But it’s probably not that, so what is it?

    Every single person who is arguing The Big Picture and citing examples of other cases featuring innocent black men and bad white cops is pushing the narrative over the facts, and demanding that Wilson answer not for his actions, but those of those bad cops with whom he shares a profession and a skin tone.

    Out of curiosity, can you name any examples of situations where a shooter of a black man was clearly in the wrong, despite the claim of self-defense?




    0



    0
  180. Lenoxus says:

    I feel like re-iterating my point about “neutrality” on this. In general, when Person A fires a gun and this kills unarmed Person B, we don’t approach that with a neutral attitude. We say that A needs a mighty good excuse, and even if A claims self-defense (instead of, I don’t know, saying “I’m a murderer, what can I say?”), we don’t default to some kind of neutral position. We say that it looks like A, at the very least, screwed up royally. We say it looks like involuntary manslaughter at the least.

    At least, that’s what I hope for in general, and in general I think that’s the national reaction we get. Until Person B is a black man. Then we suddenly hear cries of not knowing the whole story.

    And looking at this story, consider everything beyond the close shooting of the hand (although it is worth discussing). Wilson lied about severe head trauma. He lied about Brown charging at him headfirst, and even if it were true it would be incoherent to treat that as justification for deadly force. They left the body for hours. He wasn’t questioned or treated at all like a man who had just shot someone. The police covered for him as best they could, and reacted outrageously to the protests. They’ve leaked information in a manipulative manner, and this grand jury investigation is looking like it has as a goal the opposite of a prosecutor’s usual desired outcome.




    0



    0
  181. Grewgills says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:
    As tot he paragraphs, the comment was cohesive enough that it didn’t require paragraph breaks, but I will break down thoughts to make it easier for you if you need.

    They were at least 25 feet apart and considerably further from the cruiser. This indicates that Wilson was pursuing Brown, the wounded and unarmed teen.

    Wilson could have at any point in that pursuit holstered his pistol in favor of a non-lethal weapon from his belt. He chose not to.You say you aren’t defending his position, but you have repeatedly defended his choice to choose his pistol over all other choices available to him not only in his car but out when there was plenty of distance between them.




    0



    0
  182. anjin-san says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Every single person who is arguing The Big Picture and citing examples of other cases featuring innocent black men and bad white cops is pushing the narrative over the facts, and demanding that Wilson answer not for his actions, but those of those bad cops with whom he shares a profession and a skin tone.

    Here in the real world, we are arguing that Wilson should be subject to a fair and equitable process, and not enjoy a greased ride through a system that is heavily biased in his favors.

    It is additionally being pointed out that there is a larger – much larger – problem that needs to be discussed and addressed.

    It’s noteworthy that one moment you are engaging in a great deal of speculation – creating a narrative – and the next you are all about the facts. It seems you are all about the expedience of the moment.




    0



    0
  183. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Grewgills: They were at least 25 feet apart and considerably further from the cruiser. This indicates that Wilson was pursuing Brown, the wounded and unarmed teen.

    Alternately, WIlson was pursuing Brown, who had just attacked and tried to kill him. According to Wilson’s account, of course, and consistent with the physical evidence.

    So Wilson is running after Brown. Brown’s got a good head start, and already demonstrated a seriously violent streak. Wilson has his gun in hand, a baton at his back, and (presumably) pepper spray at his waist. At what point should he stop running after the suspect to safely holster his gun and draw an alternate weapon?

    And 25 feet? A second or two is easily enough time to cover that distance, especially if one is properly motivated and adrenalized. If you don’t care for that Mythbusters video, try it yourself. See how long it takes you to cover that distance.

    Then take that time and see how long it would take you to safely holster a drawn gun and prepare either a baton or a canister of pepper spray. We’ll assume that Wilson was adequately trained that he could do both at the same time.

    Again, Wilson’s story is consistent with the physical evidence. The eyewitness reports are not consistent with the physical evidence.




    0



    0
  184. LaMont says:

    @Lenoxus:

    Your argument about neutrality is about as plain and simple as it gets. Sadly, when a black person argues the simple point of person A killing unarmed person B, they are automatically looked at as race baiters. Therefore, oftentimes the race baiting accusers are the ones that initially interject race into the discussion. In my opinion, by nature of the accusation, they understand exactly what is going on. Perhaps an underlying guilt keeps them from admitting it.




    0



    0
  185. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Rafer Janders: Sorry I missed this earlier.

    Here’s one: a policeman is engaged in a struggle with an attacker armed with a knife. The attacker tried to stab the cop but the cop shoots the attacker first. The attacker then drops the knife, puts his hand up in surrender, and then staggers backwards in wounded retreat. The cop now shoots again, killling him.

    Justified in the first shot, not justified in the second, deadly shot.

    Those are two different shootings. And they prove my point.

    In the first part, the cop is justified in shooting the other guy, AND justified in killing him.

    In the second part, neither the shooting nor the killing is justified.

    What I was asking for was a scenario where it was justified for the cop to shoot the suspect, BUT not kill the suspect. And they don’t exist. If the shooting is justified, then the killing is justified. Likewise, if the killing is not justified, then the shooting is not justified.

    “Shoot” and “kill” are essentially synonymous in this context. Shooting is deadly force, by definition.

    The ambiguity probably arises in the distinction between the intent and the consequence of the shooting. The cop’s intent isn’t to kill, but to stop; it’s just that the surest way to stop someone in that context is to kill them.

    Years ago I read a commentary about the use of lethal force by cops. I’m trying to recall it perfectly, but the gist was that lethal force is justified when it is so important to stop the suspect that it doesn’t matter if the suspect lives or dies. I found that hard to swallow, but harder to refute.




    0



    0
  186. LaMont says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Again, Wilson’s story is consistent with the physical evidence. The eyewitness reports are not consistent with the physical evidence.

    Although many here would strongly believe the reverse, given what we know to be official about this case, no one can say the evidence supports any story at this point. Your problem is that you are using this false premise to support your reasoning. You just don’t seem to understand that!




    0



    0
  187. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @LaMont: No, the evidence supports Wilson’s story. And it doesn’t support the eyewitness accounts.

    There’s no proof, but there may never be. However, Wilson’s account is supported by the evidence.




    0



    0
  188. LaMont says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Wilson’s account is supported by the evidence.

    Of course it does. I mean, no way will an officer involved in the killing of an unarmed person would ever intentionally frame his story to match the known evidence.

    You are unbelievable. The evidence, or lack thereof quite possibly due to some shoddy police work, doesn’t say anything by itself. That is why witnesses, who by the way may be more credible than the person trying to save his butt, are involved. You still could not refute Rozzie’s point on the bullet traveling from the rear to the front of Brown’s arm which could ultimately corroborate with what witnesses stated in the beginning. Why – becuase no one knows anything. Yet you appear to be confident that the officer’s story is the right one. You really are a piece of work…




    0



    0
  189. David M says:

    @LaMont:

    Look, some people just don’t have a problem with unarmed men being shot. It’s really that simple, and the only explanation for the vociferous defense of the shooters.

    As to the conclusion of why they don’t have a problem with these unarmed men being shot…

    …is probably related to their support for voter suppression laws.




    0



    0
  190. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @LaMont: Oh, calm down. You’re getting hysterical. Have a nice herbal tea or something.

    First up, basic anatomy. The “front” and “back” of the arm is defined by the hand. For a wound to travel from the “back” of the arm to the “front,” the victim’s palms are, by definition, turned away from the shooter. So if Brown was running away from Wilson, there wound would be, most likely, “across” the arm.

    Next up, have you EVER read or seen the studies of just how unreliable eyewitness testimony can be? Here are a series of links from such noted right-wing hatemongering groups like The Innocence Project, Scientific American, and the American Bar Association.

    I consider physical evidence superior to eyewitness testimony because it is superior. And I don’t have to cast any aspersions on the character of the witnesses to do so. People make mistakes, and memory is not reliable.

    And note your position. We have two different stories, one from one guy and one from a group. The physical evidence supports the one guy’s story, and contradicts the various statements from the group (which, by the way, are NOT consistent among themselves.) You are arguing that there was a conspiracy to come up with a story that was consistent with the evidence, in some cases before the evidence was discovered. (I’m speaking of the autopsy, the residue/blood/DNA in the cruiser, etc.)

    I’m applying Occam’s Razor, but I’m leaving the door open that things could emerge to change things. But it ain’t happened yet.




    0



    0
  191. LaMont says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    You are arguing that there was a conspiracy to come up with a story that was consistent with the evidence, in some cases before the evidence was discovered. (I’m speaking of the autopsy, the residue/blood/DNA in the cruiser, etc.)

    What I’m arguing is that there could be a conspiracy. Given the environment we live in and everything that has come out about this case to date, you would be foolish to think it isn’t possible. No way Brown get’s a fair shot at justice without a trial. That is becoming apparent. And I have now repeated myself 3 or 4 times. I’m done…




    0



    0
  192. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @David M: Look, some people just don’t have a problem with unarmed men being shot. It’s really that simple, and the only explanation for the vociferous defense of the shooters.

    As to the conclusion of why they don’t have a problem with these unarmed men being shot…

    …is probably related to their support for voter suppression laws.

    If you’re going to call me racist, grow a pair and say it.

    But if you’re trying to shame me, you’ll have to try harder and not be so stupid. I can think of several circumstances where “shooting an unarmed person” is entirely appropriate. “Physically attacking a cop” is one. “Jumping the fence and running into the White House” would be another. “Screaming and charging an armed guard” would be a third.

    But how about if Wilson had offered Brown a gun of his own? Would that have made it “fair” for you?

    Here’s something you probably aren’t smart enough to realize: cops have no obligation to “fight fair.” They have an obligation to win fights. Because if a cop loses a fight, the other guy now has the cop’s gun, pepper spray, handcuffs, radio, and anything else they’re carrying.

    I want the cop to retain custody and control of the weapons they are entrusted with. If that means that they shoot someone who has already attacked them and are charging them, I’m OK with that.

    Why the hell aren’t you?




    0



    0
  193. LaMont says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    And by the way – witnesses don’t all have to say the exact same thing as they are witnessing from varying perspectives. A great lawyer can trick a jury into believing this. Their stories need only to be consistent with one another. And what we know today is that the fresh witness accounts shared with the media immediately following the event were all consistent to one another.




    0



    0
  194. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @LaMont: What I’m arguing is that there could be a conspiracy. Given the environment we live in and everything that has come out about this case to date, you would be foolish to think it isn’t possible.

    You got one shred of evidence of such a conspiracy?

    Oh, I know. Since there’s no proof of the conspiracy, that itself is proof of just how good the conspiracy is.




    0



    0
  195. LaMont says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    You got one shred of evidence of such a conspiracy?

    Oh, I know. Since there’s no proof of the conspiracy,…

    Wow! Again, I’m done!




    0



    0
  196. anjin-san says:

    @LaMont:

    You see, “THE SYSTEM IS BIASED TO FAVOR COPS OVER POOR BLACK PEOPLE” is not written in flaming letters across the sky, so there is no chance that it is true…




    0



    0
  197. LaMont says:

    @anjin-san:

    SMH…




    0



    0
  198. Tyrell says:

    I did find a video of some thugs confronting some innocent football fans who were leaving the Rams game. Well, some misguided thug woman hollared a bunch of curse words at these people. Evidently some man disagreed with her and actually had the nerve to peacefully disagree with this woman’s viewpoint. She responded by spitting on this man, and was promptly arrested and rightfully so.
    The leaders of the community need to set some rules and controls down for their demonstrators or they will continue to lose respect and credibility. One would be a dress code. A lot of these marchers are dressed like gang members, hookers, and bums: dress shirts, ties, clean shoes, and dresses will project a more respectable image. No screaming, hollaring curse words, taunting, or showing disrepect to anyone. No blocking, impeding, interfering, or otherwise bothering people either in vehicles or walking. They have the right to travel.
    I would say that most people have grown weary of these “demonstrations” and support is waning.
    It is time to move on. It would be more effective to get involved in the system and get some changes and reforms. But that takes work.




    0



    0
  199. Grewgills says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Alternately, WIlson was pursuing Brown, who had just attacked and tried to kill him. According to Wilson’s account, of course, and consistent with the physical evidence.

    Attacked possibly, tried to kill is a stretch, but either way Wilson was pursuing Brown.

    So Wilson is running after Brown. Brown’s got a good head start, and already demonstrated a seriously violent streak. Wilson has his gun in hand, a baton at his back, and (presumably) pepper spray at his waist. At what point should he stop running after the suspect to safely holster his gun and draw an alternate weapon?

    His first response should be to call in for back up and only then if reasonable pursue.
    He doesn’t have to come to a full stop to holster his gun and pull out either his taser or pepper spray. You are creating a false dichotomy.

    And 25 feet? A second or two is easily enough time to cover that distance,

    Brown was wounded, 300 lbs and had been fleeing the scene. The prospect of him turning 180o and closing 25′ or more in a couple of seconds is a stretch. Couple this with the fact that he had already run a hundred feet or so and you see that Wilson had plenty of time to holster his gun and pull out a nonlethal.

    Again, Wilson’s story is consistent with the physical evidence. The eyewitness reports are not consistent with the physical evidence.

    The physical evidence does not invalidate either Wilson’s story or the stories of the eyewitnesses.
    The evidence also supports the following narrative. Wilson pursued and fired shots at the fleeing Brown, Brown turned towards Wilson with open hands facing forward showing that he was unarmed, Wilson continued to fire, Brown collapsed forward after being shot in the chest and Wilson discharged a final shot into the top of Brown’s head killing him. That narrative fits both the evidence and the eyewitness accounts. I see that you are quick to discount that narrative in favor of Wilson’s narrative. Why is that?




    0



    0
  200. beth says:

    @Tyrell: Wow it would be nice if the “thugs” protesting outside abortion clinics would follow your rules too, right???




    0



    0
  201. T says:

    @Tyrell:

    dress shirts, ties, clean shoes, and dresses will project a more respectable image.

    people are getting murdered in the street and you want them to act like they are applying for a job




    0



    0
  202. wr says:

    @T: I remember the right thinking Bush was the greatest president in history because he always wore a coat and tie in the Oval Office. Apparently that’s all that really matters. You can allow the worst terrorist attack on American soil and still be the best, as long as you dress the part.

    Including the proper skin color, of course.




    0



    0
  203. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Grewgills: First up, thank you for the short paragraphs. It makes things a LOT easier.

    Attacked possibly, tried to kill is a stretch, but either way Wilson was pursuing Brown.

    If you attack a cop and get into a fight over his gun, then “trying to kill” is, to me, a fair description.

    His first response should be to call in for back up and only then if reasonable pursue. He doesn’t have to come to a full stop to holster his gun and pull out either his taser or pepper spray. You are creating a false dichotomy.

    Wilson’s report says that his radio was knocked away (or, at least, the microphone) in the struggle. And while I’ll grant you that pulling out the taser or pepper spray might not require stopping, I wouldn’t want to holster a gun while running.

    However, according to Wilson’s account, Brown had already demonstrated significant dangerousness. Again, “stopping” is most important. Tasers are one-shot weapons; if they miss or don’t get through to the skin, they’re a wasted effort. And pepper spray is similar, as well as shorter-ranged. Wilson’s gun has multiple shots loaded in it, and is already at hand.

    Brown was wounded, 300 lbs and had been fleeing the scene. The prospect of him turning 180o and closing 25′ or more in a couple of seconds is a stretch. Couple this with the fact that he had already run a hundred feet or so and you see that Wilson had plenty of time to holster his gun and pull out a nonlethal.

    I can’t find an article that details the distances involved. Do you have somewhere that says just where Brown, Wilson, and the SUV were at the end? I just spent about 25 minutes looking for that, and the closest I can find is this blog entry. (Note that the only thing I am using from that article is the marked-up Google Earth shot, and only the parts indicating where Brown’s body ended up and the cruiser’s location. I consider everything else irrelevant, and would gladly use another chart if you have one or can find one.)

    A few things I think we can both agree on: Both Brown and Wilson were seriously pumped with adrenalin, and Brown’s hand wound would not significantly impair his running.

    The physical evidence does not invalidate either Wilson’s story or the stories of the eyewitnesses.
    The evidence also supports the following narrative. Wilson pursued and fired shots at the fleeing Brown, Brown turned towards Wilson with open hands facing forward showing that he was unarmed, Wilson continued to fire, Brown collapsed forward after being shot in the chest and Wilson discharged a final shot into the top of Brown’s head killing him.

    One thing that makes me reject your scenario is the arm wound, from the back of the arm and out the front. That greatly limits the possible scenarios. Either Brown was facing Wilson and did NOT have his hands up in a surrendering gesture, or he was facing away and surrendering. Stand in front of a mirror and see what kinds of angles you have to put your arms in for a bullet to pass from the back of the arm to the front. Down at the sides? Yes. Running forward? Yes. Raised above your head to surrender? Nope, unless you also have your back to the person with the gun.

    And I use Wilson’s narrative because, if we’re going to have a discussion, we need to have a common starting point. The witness accounts are all over the map, and the ones I’ve seen all involve things that have been found in conflict with the physical evidence. The main element has Brown being shot in the back. Wilson’s story is consistent with the physical evidence so far, so I look for things that will support or discredit it.

    I think I have one thing that shows where we disagree: I believe that Wilson is innocent until proven guilty. Some here seem to be saying that he’s innocent until proven guilty. You… I get the vibe that you’re inclined to believe him guilty, but you’re not convinced enough to declare that. I disagree with you on that, but I’m not going to condemn you for that. Instead, I’m asking 1) if that is a fair description of your current stance, and 2) what sorts of facts would you want to have to persuade you, either way?




    0



    0
  204. Grewgills says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Wilson’s report says that his radio was knocked away (or, at least, the microphone) in the struggle.

    Once Brown ran away that is no longer an issue. He could easily use his car radio to call in. No one in the community was in immediate danger. At that time he could also have holstered his gun and taken out a nonlethal.

    A few things I think we can both agree on: Both Brown and Wilson were seriously pumped with adrenalin, and Brown’s hand wound would not significantly impair his running.

    Brown would have been bleeding from the wound and would have been experiencing a fair bit of pain. That can indeed impair the ability to perform sustained aerobic activity the ability to effectively engage in hand to hand combat. Being shot once and being shot at tend to dissuade charging the person with the gun from a distance. It makes much more sense that Brown would have stopped and turned to avoid being shot at more than to try and charge the gun wielding cop.

    One thing that makes me reject your scenario is the arm wound, from the back of the arm and out the front. That greatly limits the possible scenarios. Either Brown was facing Wilson and did NOT have his hands up in a surrendering gesture, or he was facing away and surrendering.

    As multiple witnesses stated Brown held his hands up in surrender position it is plausible that Brown raised his hands before turning around and sustained that wound then.

    I think I have one thing that shows where we disagree: I believe that Wilson is innocent until proven guilty. Some here seem to be saying that he’s innocent until proven guilty…

    That is not a reasonable statement of my position. I have seen enough evidence to warrant an indictment and from what I have seen of the Fergusen PD I don’t trust them to conduct a fair and thorough investigation without oversight. What I want is a real, thorough and fair hearing of all of the evidence. Give him a fair trial and let all of the evidence come out in court.
    You seem to be arguing that the Fergusen PD can be trusted to handle the investigation of Wilson without any oversight and that if they and the local DA are allowed to act without substantial oversight that everything will turn out as it should and justice will be done. Is that a fair characterization of your position?




    0



    0
  205. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Grewgills: I believe in “innocent until proven guilty,” and I extend that to police officers.

    But I will say this, as I said about Lois Lerner: If Wilson asserts his 5th Amendment right at any point during the process, he should be fired immediately and for cause. I firmly believe that NO public employee has the right to assert the 5th Amendment when called upon to explain their actions carried out in the performance of their job.

    And the same for any other officer from the Ferguson PD, for that matter.

    Wilson, like Lerner, were operating on OUR payroll and in OUR names when they committed the actions that brought them national attention. We, as their employers have every right to demand that they give a full and accurate and honest accounting of their actions that they carried out as part of their jobs. If they will not, then they have forfeited their right to hold that position of trust.

    I’ve been bothered by police officers “testilying” and taking the 5th, and thought this an appropriate response for some time. Unfortunately, I seem to be in a minority in this regard…




    0



    0
  206. Grewgills says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    I believe in “innocent until proven guilty,” and I extend that to police officers.

    Sigh, note the ellipsis. I didn’t want to include your entire last paragraph in the block quote. If you read beyond ”That is not a reasonable statement of my position” you would see that I am not saying his guilt is a forgone conclusion, rather I am saying your final paragraph was not an accurate statement of my position. Enough evidence has been shown to warrant a trial. I think the Fergusen PD have been not handled this honestly or appropriately with their selective leaks and their thuggish actions. Let their be a trial.
    I’m not sure where your whole pleading the 5th bit came from, but officer Wilson does have that right. If he chooses to exercise it, then the other witnesses testimony will be what the jury hears and the consequences will be what they will be.
    As to Lerner and the 5th, if the Republicans wanted her testimony rather than just wanting to extend their show trial they could give her immunity at any time and she could no longer invoke that right. That they still have not done so indicates strongly that they know she has nothing for them and it serves their political purposes to keep the status quo.




    0



    0
  207. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Grewgills: I’m not sure where your whole pleading the 5th bit came from, but officer Wilson does have that right. If he chooses to exercise it, then the other witnesses testimony will be what the jury hears and the consequences will be what they will be.

    Yes, Wilson has that right. And he has the right for that not to be used against him in court. I’m saying that the 5th Amendment doesn’t prevent him from being fired for invoking it when asked about things he did while on duty, much like Lerner should have been fired instead of allowed to retire with full benefits.

    In the Lerner matter, immunity is still a possibility. My hunch was that the GOP was planning on getting evidence to show wrongdoing on her behalf before offering her immunity, to strengthen their hand and have more of a stick while dangling the carrot. Unfortunately, the didn’t anticipate two things: an astonishingly odds-defying streak of incredibly convenient hard drive crashes for the records they wanted, and an even more astonishing case of the IRS totally ignoring federal records-preservation laws, going back several years.

    “We’d like these records, so please provide the hard drives they are on.”

    “Oops, they all crashed, and we threw them out. Sorry.”

    “Well, then, give us the legally-mandated backups you have to keep. We’ll get them from those.”

    “Oh, we don’t do that. Never have. Didn’t have the money.”

    “Oh, really? And who did you notify that you were violating federal law because you didn’t have the money?”

    “You. Just now.”

    But back to Wilson: he has an obligation to give his account, under oath, of what happened. Should he choose to lie, he should be fired and criminally charged. If he invokes his 5th Amendment right, then he should be fired.




    0



    0