**UPDATE: After five whole days and a militarized assault on the town’s residents, Ferguson’s Police Chief finally decided it was time to release the name of Mike Brown’s murderer. The officer’s name is Darren Wilson, but don’t expect him to be brought to justice in the town he patrolled and assassinated an unarmed teenager in. All of the authorities involved allowed Wilson to gather up his things along with his family and flee far away to an unknown location more than two days ago. Unsurprisingly, the police chief couldn’t bring himself to release the killer cop’s name without renewing the attempt to smear Michael Brown by releasing video footage from a surveillance camera allegedly showing Brown push a store clerk two or three hours before he was shot. Meanwhile no pictures of Darren Wilson accompanied the the purported footage’s release, and the white establishment and its defenders are trying to put the focus all on Brown’s character instead of Wilson’s.
As she was driving home to her apartment Saturday afternoon, Desiree Harris of Ferguson, Missouri passed by her grandson who was nearing her place for a visit. As was parking her car, however, she was suddenly alarmed at what appeared to be the sound of several gunshot ringing out. She quickly ran to see what was going on, but nothing could have prepared her for what she was about to see: her 18 year-old grandson’s body lying in a pool of blood in the middle of the street. “What happened?!,” Harris demanded to know of a nearby police officer. But he would give her no answer. It was approximately 2:15 P.M. Saturday, August 9 when Michael Brown’s life was tragically ended by multiple bullet wounds in his body, and as of 2:15 A.M. there remained as many unanswered questions as there had been 12 hours earlier in the day. An investigation over the incident has been turned over to the nearby St. Louis Police Department, who confirmed only that it was indeed a police officer’s gunfire that killed the young Black man. Police would provide no other information nor would they as much as attempt an explanation as to why Michael Brown had been shot.
One person who bore witness to this horrendous scene is 19 year-old Piaget Crenshaw, who says she saw the police officer suddenly begin to question Brown out of nowhere. As far as she could tell Brown was complying with the officer’s requests, raising his hands in the air above his head. But when the officer, for no apparent reason, started trying to move Brown into a cop car, the unarmed teenager, his hands still above his head, began fleeing towards his grandmother’s house. The cop responded by firing at the teen several times, apparently aiming to kill. Michael Brown’s mother, Lesley McSpadden, was horrified when she heard the news, saying “I know they killed my son. This was wrong and it was cold-hearted.”
What exactly the cause of this shooting was no one seems to know, and police are unwilling to offer an explanation. What is almost certain, however, is that it was the unnamed police officer who initiated the deadly confrontation, as Brown was seen walking calmly towards his grandmother’s place of residence just moments prior. Those who knew Michael Brown say he was never one to get into any kind of trouble. He’d just graduated high school months earlier, and was excited that he was beginning courses at Vatterott College in St. Louis Monday. In the words of his grandmother, “My grandson never even got into a fight. He was just looking forward to getting on with his life. He was on his way.” Brown’s mother added, “[Michael] doesn’t kill, steal or rob. He doesn’t do any of that.”
As word spread throughout the local community that yet another young African American was gunned down by a police officer in his own (or in this case his grandmother’s) neighborhood, over a hundred people from the overwhelmingly Black community gathered to confront the police and began to demand answers. It didn’t take long for about 60 police units to respond by surrounding the angered community members in hopes of intimidating them. Reports tell of a standoff lasting several hours, managing to get quiet only as the mourners gathered in circle for prayer. As they were praying, police officers continued arriving on the scene in fully-armored SWAT vehicles. At one point, when officers seemingly pointed their assault rifles at members of the community, citizens responded by raising their hands above their heads and saying, “Don’t shoot me!”
Meanwhile Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson has called “for calm and for people to give us a chance to conduct a thorough investigation”, a hollow request considering how police departments consistently demonstrated that they are simply not interested in holding the murderers among their ranks accountable. In fact they are concerned only with providing them cover. Ferguson’s Mayor James Knowles III meanwhile referred to the terrible shooting as “a tragedy”, but he echoed the police chief by calling on residents to “have faith in the process.”
As for the unnamed police officer who fired the fatal shots at Michael Brown, he is currently on “paid administrative leave.”