Michael Brown Shooting

After a Week of Unrest in Ferguson, Missouri Governor Wants "a vigorous prosecution" in Michael Brown Case

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Governor Jay Nixon
Missouri

With not-so-effortless timing, Missouri's Governor Jay Nixon announces that, ten days after a Ferguson police officer shot unarmed Michael Brown at least six times, sparking violent protests, it's time for "a vigorous prosecution" to be pursued.

This comes after an intervening week-plus of police officers on the street in battle dress, riding armored vehicles, wielding assault rifles, and firing on the admittedly aggressive crowd in a feedback loop of viciousness. It was a week that burned indelible images into many apparently willfully innocent minds of a U.S. city under what looked like military occupation. Foreign correspondents flocked to the scene to capture the exotic sight of urban conflict in a place where you could get a decent cup of coffee.

To put the Ferguson fiasco in context, Governor Nixon sent in the National Guard to deescalate tensions between authorities and a mostly African-American community fed up with brutal police tactics.

"National Guard" and "deescalate" don't generally appear in the same sentence.

But now, while promising to restore law and order in Ferguson, where police are under the command of Captain Ron Johnson of the Highway Patrol, local officials having been pushed aside as perhaps a tad too banana-republic-ish in their crowd control instincts, Governor Nixon says it just might be time to address the original cause of upset.

a vigorous prosecution must now be pursued.

The democratically elected St. Louis County prosecutor and the Attorney General of the United States, each have a job to do. Their obligation to achieve justice in the shooting death of Michael Brown must be carried out thoroughly, promptly, and correctly; and I call upon them to meet those expectations.

Let's remember that this specific incident started with the shooting, at least six times, of an unarmed man who may have been a shoplifter, and who was apparently not suspected of that crime, but was instead stopped for walking in the street.

Behind that is a long and escalating history of intrusive and oppressive policing, starting in America's minority communities, but extending far beyond. The most visible aspect of that is the camouflage and armored vehicles, but cops in patrol cars and blue uniforms can be every bit as big a problem when they adopt an "obey or die" attitude and persecute whole neighborhoods.

"A vigorous prosecution" (carried out according to due process, and not out of panic, one hopes, though we're in politician country here) is a first step. And Nixon sounds an encouraging note when he says, "We won't always get it right, but we're going to keep trying. Because Ferguson is a test, a test not just for the people of this community, but for all Americans. And it is a test we must not fail."

If we're going to avoid an epic fail, changing the way police operate throughout the country (and not just throwing one cop to the wolves) needs to come next.

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  1. Just when I think things can’t get any dumber.

    1. This whole thing has devolved into a farce, it would be sad if it wasn’t so predictable.

  2. Is it just me or do we get a disproportionately high number of police brutality stories coming out of Missouri? Seems like the worst legal atrocities are very often the product of Missouri police departments and that state’s justice system.

    Any Reasonators live there that can confirm the higher than average rate dickheadedness among LEOs and the jsutice system?

    1. I thought most of them came from Florida.

    2. They disproportionately come from the only planet with human life on it, I think.

      1. Uranus?

    3. I thought most came out of Prince Georges County and the LASD.

  3. “A vigorous prosecution”

    Get ready for Travon Martin II. Facts mean nothing, image means everything.

    1. There’s already a substantive difference between being shot from 35 feet away and being shot while on top of someone beating that someone’s ass.

      1. Except that he was NOT shot from 35 feet away, but from 6 – 7 feet while charging at the officer, who he had already scuffled with in said officer’s patrol car.

        As I said, facts mean nothing, especially to those looking for a kangaroo court.

        1. I shoot with cops on a regular basis.

          If he hit six out of six shots, you can safely assume that Brown was right on top of him.

          Six hits from 35ft? Maybe if he emptied an entire magazine. Even that would be showing a abnormally high level of proficiency.

          1. You have a point. Usually these events go something like : ” 15 shots fired by the officer with 3 striking the intended target.”

          2. He missed at least once; they recovered a bullet from a nearby house.

            1. Miss or pass-through?

              1. I’d say miss. Unlikely that a 9mm passes through a man of Brown’s size.

                1. A 9mm not hitting bone could certainly pass right through someone unless it was hallow point ammunition.

                2. I’d say miss. Unlikely that a 9mm passes through a man of Brown’s size.

                  I dunno. Hollowpoints can fail to expand, shots can miss bone, etc… All I know is that Brown has at least nine holes in his body, caused by at least three bullets (because that’s how many they found in him). The linked picture omits one hole at the base of his right wrist. My thought is that he got shot three times, with the arm wounds being caused by one bullet, the eye/jaw/collarbone by another, and the top of the head shot by the third. God knows how many times the cop had to shoot to get three hits—I haven’t seen it mentioned anywhere, or even the caliber used.

                  The law in MO for justifying a LEO’s use of force in making an arrest is, in part, covered in 563.046 RSMo(which can be found within this site—it gets cranky if you try to link directly to the statute).

                  3. A law enforcement officer in effecting an arrest or in preventing an escape from custody is justified in using deadly force only……(2) When he reasonably believes that such use of deadly force is immediately necessary to effect the arrest and also reasonably believes that the person to be arrested…(a) Has committed or attempted to commit a felony;…

                  1. So, if the cop reasonably felt that shooting Brown was immediately necessary to arrest Brown, he’s covered. Even if Brown hadn’t turned around to charge him. I don’t know if Tennessee v. Garner‘s been expanded to prohibit shooting a violent felon in the back, if that’s the only way the officer can arrest him. And a guy who just punched a cop in the eyesocket, and tried to take the cop’s gun, qualifies as a violent felon.

                    Also, from Dr. Vincent DiMaio’s text on forensic evaluation of GSWs, it can be really tough to figure out which is the entrance and exit wounds, when the wounds lack powder residue. (See Kennedy Assassination). Skin is elastic, bullets can have weird trajectories in tissue, etc…

                    My own thought, which can change as we get more info, is that the cop was shooting at a fleeing Brown, Brown turned, had his hands at about chest height (whether to surrender or charge the officer, I dunno) and got hit with either the arm bullet or the eye bullet. People using handguns to try and stop a lethal threat, usually end up having to shoot the threat multiple times. Mainly because handguns are really bad at instantly incapacitating someone if you don’t hit them in the head. That and it’s really easy to fire off multiple shots quickly under stress. I’d be surprised if we find out the cop didn’t end up dumping the magazine at Brown.

        2. Except that he was NOT shot from 35 feet away, but from 6 – 7 feet while charging at the officer, who he had already scuffled with in said officer’s patrol car.

          Where’s the evidence for this assertion? The autopsy reports do not corroborate your claim. There’s no GSR, for example.

          1. The evidence is that there’s a fucking bullet hole in the officer’s dash board, and the officer has a broken eye socket. The officer started shooting while he was being attacked inside his police car.

            While the police regularly shoot unnecessarily, this isn’t one of those cases.

    2. More government stupidity. First, you investigate, then you indict, then you prosecute. Seems the government has decided to skip a few steps. There are lots of examples of police malice and incompetence, but it is not clear we have that here. The initial race baiting narrative has fallen apart. What we do know is we have an incompetent governor, ag, police chief responded stupidly to a mob mentality and inflaming the situation. Where is the incident report? Lets first demand facts before getting out the lynch rope.

      1. But a lynch mob mentality, and statements favoring retribution before all facts are known, are both okay here, apparently.

        All I can gather from most of the mental midgets I’ve heard interviewed in Ferguson is that although Michael Brown was entitled to due process, apparently the cop is not.

        I strongly dislike cops as a group, but the more facts that come to light in this case, the more it appears that the actions of the cop may have been understandable. It’s just a matter of being honest; but most of the race-baiters and idiots demanding “justice” had their minds made up on Day 1 and aren’t going to change their opinion, no matter what.

        The only good thing to come out of this circus is the debate on the militarization of police — though I doubt we’ll see anything other than nominal change, since the public has a shorter attention span than the cops (who will be looking out for their own interests.)

        1. I strongly dislike cops as a group, but the more facts that come to light in this case, the more it appears that the actions of the cop may have been understandable.

          They may have been. Or they may not be. Also, “understandable” =/= justifiable. I understand when someone blows away her abusive spouse, but that does not make it justifiable.

          1. I’m not sure what your second sentence adds except redundancy — if they “may,” then it necessarily follows that they “may not;” and of course whether or not the cop’s actions were justifiable is an additional layer hinging upon the ultimate comprehensibility of his mental state.

            If you’re nitpicking for the sake of it, the proper legal terminology also includes the distinction between excusable and justifiable homicide.

        2. All I can gather from most of the mental midgets I’ve heard interviewed in Ferguson is that although Michael Brown was entitled to due process, apparently the cop is not.

          Oh, come on. Everyone acknowledges that Darren Wilson is entitled to due process, which we all understand to mean “a fair trial leading to a conviction.” (Preferable, though not essential, is a lengthy prison term. The exact length is immaterial, because the hope is that he’ll be shanked to death in the first year.)

          1. can’t tell if you’re being serious.

  4. I’ve been debating ‘moral’, and god-fearing Republican Conservatives all day… aaaaand, evidently I’m not aware that cops operate in a fish bowl and as a result police rarely do anything wrong and to top it off they are actually pretty lenient by only killing, justifiably, 400 citizens a year out of 15 million arrests. I really need a good blinding baptism in Conservative indifference methinks.

    1. Provide them with links to Balko.

      1. You haven’t heard? Balko is a cop-wannabe with an agenda designed to rob law enforcement of their ‘rights’. Yes, their ‘rights’.

        1. Can you skip the layer of metaphor and just punch them in the groin?

    2. 400 a year? It’s got to be more than that. I mean, cops in LA alone kill more people than that a year.

      1. Any proof for that assertion RE: Los Angeles?

      2. Even at 400 they’re killing non-cops at a disproportionate rate vs the rate that non-cops are killing them.

        1. Who are “they” and “them” and what the fuck are you talking about?

          1. He means that 400 “police-kill-civilian” events per year is much higher than the number of “civilian-kills-police” events.

            Which is true, even if you count every traffic accident death as a “civilian-kills-police” situation regardless of who’s to blame.

            1. And they don’t even release the stats about how many ‘unjustified’ police shoot civilian incidents occur nationwide. Since not a single day goes by where you can’t find a fresh news story about an unjustified police shooting somewhere. Would 365 per year be too unrealistic?

    3. Approximately 200 blacks per year die during arrest nationwide (and some unquantified percentage of those were black police officers doing the arrest that led to the death of a black perp).

      Approximately 7,500 blacks are killed by other blacks each year (93% of all homicides inflicted on blacks).

      So, for each black death at the hands of the police, about 40 blacks are killed by other blacks, a rate on average of 20 per day.

      Debate that!

      I need a good blinding baptism in Liberal indifference methinks.

      1. Are police 20% of the population? Because If there is less than one cop per 200 black people, a random black person is more likely to be killed by a cop than a black person. (We’ll assume that your statistics don’t count when black cops kill black people.) So is there one cop per 1000 total people in America?

      2. What’s the relevance of this? Is it not possible to suggest that there are multiple problems at the same time?

        1. If you’re concerned about a particular thing, that means you think everything else in the world is fine. That’s how logic works.

          1. It is amazing that when we talk about police brutality, people have the compulsive need to shoehorn irrelevant race-based data into the debate.

            1. Yeah I think the fact that cops regularly shoot people with impunity is a philosophical problem that society allows people to have such license to murder on the basis of some ‘greater good’ utilitarian BS.

              The racial aspect may well be an issue, but white or black, if a cop isn’t going to face penalties for killing people in general the problem is not about race. There’s lots of neo-Nazis in the US but the vast majority (the non-cops) of them don’t go around murdering blacks because they won’t get qualified immunity. Yet the only thing people want to talk about when a cop kills is his potential for racial animosity towards the victim, not the fact that he can get away with murder in general.

      3. “I need a good blinding baptism in Liberal indifference methinks.”

        Oh, good one. And that baptism is useful on Raw Story. šŸ˜‰

        I get the race data. I grasp some of the nuance on both sides of race-centric debates.

        However, I tend to comment more on what I perceive to be the larger social issue which stems from autocratic hierarchies, their embrace by society in general (in spite of color), and collective support of aggressive and draconian laws and enforcement.

      4. So cops should be able to execute suspects on site. Got it.

        Hey at least those heroes that threw the flashbang into the babies crib the other night went home safely. And it’s totally justified because there’s a lot of black on black violence in poor neighborhoods.

  5. “Let’s remember that this specific incident started with witnesses lying about the circumstances under which a 6’7″ 285lb man named Michael Brown, who robbed a store, was walking down the middle of the street with the loot in his hands, and attacked a police officer when stopped for questioning, was shot. A subsequent autopsy revealed that the shooting could not possibly have happened as initially described by witnesses.”

    Fixed it for you.

      1. It’s not at all irrelevant. If you physically attack and assault a cop who is trying to question you OR ANY ARMED CITIZEN, and you’re much larger and stronger than the cop OR ANY ARMED CITIZEN, you’re going to get shot, AS IT SHOULD BE. The alternative is to be disarmed and killed with your own gun.

        1. No the armed citizen would be tried for murder. The cop would be exonerated for having simply protected himself.

          1. Bullshit. Every state recognized the inherent right of self defense. States with Castle Doctrine and so-called “stand your ground” laws do not charge or arrest a person who has committed what is clearly a justifiable homicide. The Zimmerman case is a good example of this. The ONLY reason Zimmerman was charged and arrested was because of media pressure, and a public that’s as stupid as a bag of rocks.

            Some years ago, I was in a home where an unarmed male kicked in the front door. He was dead before he hit the ground, and never made it through the doorway. One shot, through the heart. I literally watched the guy die in mid-air from 5 feet away. The police came, investigated the indecent, took everyone present in for questioning, and within a matter of hours said “damn nice shot”, and turned everyone loose. Except for repairing the door and scrubbing the blood stains off the porch, that was the end of it. No charges. No arrest.

            1. Bullshit. Every state recognized the inherent right of self defense. States with Castle Doctrine and so-called “stand your ground” laws do not charge or arrest a person who has committed what is clearly a justifiable homicide.

              You’re missing the point. A cop shoots someone, then coworker cops come to the scene and ask what happened, they take the shooter cop’s word, there is little if any scrutiny by his colleagues and even if it goes to court, the professional courtesy of prosecutors and judges protect the cop and assume his innocence start to finish.

              An armed citizen shoots someone, then cops come and ask what happened, they don’t take his word for it in most circumstances and get warrants for the guy’s house and hold him in lockup until they find exonerating evidence. But then once he goes to court, anything the cop might say incriminate the shooter is gospel and the armed citizen will have to demonstrate the self-defense nature of the shooting.

              Now do you really want to tell me that a CCW permit holder and a cop are treated the same by the justice system in similar situations? The cost benefit analysis going through an armed citizens head is far more rigorous than the same analysis taking place inside a cops head just before he shoots.

              1. A crime like accidentally shooting the wrong person, that would get an armed citizen charged with manslaughter if he’s lucky, and it would get a cop charged with a vacation.

                1. Here’s how it works: The cops want to shove it under the rug. The victim’s family wants justice. The city pays the victim’s family a metric fuck-ton of taxpayer money. The victim’s family goes on vacation too.

                  The cops get away with whatever the District Attorney lets them get away with. When the DA feels pain, only then will things will change. The cops, the judge, and the DA are all on the same team. The only one elected is the DA.

              2. “the armed citizen will have to demonstrate the self-defense nature of the shooting.”

                Wrong again. In states with “stand your ground” type laws, it is the prosecutor who must prove that the shooting was NOT self-defense.

                I’m not missing the point at all.

                While I completely agree that far too many police officers are NOT held accountable for their actions, and this is largely responsible for the “shoot first, ask questions later” attitude exhibited by many, it’s because WE, the public, have allowed this to happen. How many people rioted when the cops shot up two women in a pickup truck, just because they were stupidly mistaken for a suspect simply because they were in a pickup truck? The correct answer is “none”. Instead, everyone gets worked up over what was clearly a justified shooting, simply because it was a black criminal who got shot, and because he was black and the cop was white, it has to be “racism”. It just has to be; otherwise, how can we justify or explain the complete failure and disfunctionality of the black culture?

                1. I don’t disagree with you for th emost part, except for the degree to which ‘law abiding’ citizens are treated differently than agents of the state. I’m aware of the principle of ‘innocent until proven guilty’, but that’s a principle subject to rather selective enforcement as you may or may not know.

                  Wrong again. In states with “stand your ground” type laws, it is the prosecutor who must prove that the shooting was NOT self-defense.

                  So I’m out in boonies. Some guy walks by and I shoot him in the face. I call the cops and claim I was defending myself. According to you they MUST take my word for it and walk away, but that doesn’t happen with regular civilians, that’s what happens with cops. ‘Stand your ground’ or not, the ability of the prosecutor to claim you arbitrarily murdered someone is not diminished. Even George Zimmerman was handcuffed and held in lock up, released and eventually charged, albeit under political pressure but charged nonetheless.

                  it’s because WE, the public, have allowed this to happen

                  Qualified immunity. Claiming that cops are somehow above the law while they commit crime in the course of their job is the problem and I agree the problem is that people accept that. It’s part of the same immoral fallacy that has people acknowledging the legitimacy of the state, that lets the state commit countless atrocities and go on existing like they hadn’t.

                  1. How many people rioted when the cops shot up two women in a pickup truck, just because they were stupidly mistaken for a suspect simply because they were in a pickup truck? The correct answer is “none”. Instead, everyone gets worked up over what was clearly a justified shooting, simply because it was a black criminal who got shot, and because he was black and the cop was white, it has to be “racism”.

                    Even if it was ‘racism’ at the heart of this issue, that racism wouldn’t be of the murderous variety without another key ingredient; qualified immunity.

                    It just has to be; otherwise, how can we justify or explain the complete failure and disfunctionality of the black culture?

                    Well we can blame other ethnic groups, like the ‘white guilt’ crowd love to do. To these people, even genocide isn’t genocide if the victims are white, then they call it ‘farm murders’ like in South Africa’s case. In short, no you can’t even claim that black culture is dysfunctional without being accused of having an account on Stormfront. Never mind the 70% of children growing up without a father, never mind the higher than average murder, rape and assault rates. Never mind the below average entrepreneurial drive. Never mind the glorification of rappers and basketball players at the expense of a hard work ethic. Never mind the perpetual ratcheting up of victimhood status.

                    If you are critical of any of that, you’re a racist and need to be shot.

                  2. “So I’m out in boonies. Some guy walks by and I shoot him in the face. I call the cops and claim I was defending myself. According to you they MUST take my word for it and walk away, but that doesn’t happen with regular civilians, …”

                    I never said they “MUST” take your word for it and walk away. They will investigate. Results vary depending on the totality of circumstances. If you just shot a girl scout selling cookies door-to-door, and then claim she assaulted you, you’re going to jail, even if she did. If you just shot an escaped convict carrying a machete in the parking lot of Wal Mart, you’re getting an award from the Chief of Police, even if he was just walking by.

  6. OT: Noone listen to NPR right now, they are discussing how Fracking causes earthquakes. As always they are fair and balanced with two green lobbyists and one guy who is a president of a company that Fracks who is completely neutered. Why you ask they don’t have you know actual scientists/geologists on the panel? Because fracking is bad.

    1. I can’t listen to NPR, their shilling for every leftist fallacy in existence aside, they over-intellectualize everything. I remember they did a piece on the female rapper who sang “My milkshakes bring the boys to the yard” and NPR proceeded to provide a literary analysis of the lyrics and that song’s attempt to ‘deconstruct gender roles in the black community’.

      I mean it’s a song about a trashy and utterly stupid woman with big fatty tits and NPR was acting like they were analyzing James Joyce.

  7. Interesting: I just had a liberal Facebook friend say if it comes to Paul vs. Clinton, he’s voting Paul.

    1. Liberal, not progressive, although I might be the only one still making that distinction.

        1. Is Buckeye H.O.F. you? If so, I got it. Sounds great. As fate would have it, I find out which Buckeye tix I get today. If no Hokies, I’ll definitely try to be there.

          1. Yeah man! Should be Ken, nikki, Warty, and hopefully Zenon Evans…and you too!

            1. That’d be fun. So I hope I DON’T pull Va. Tech tix.

              1. Nick should get off his sorry ass and drive up, assuming he’s in Cincy.

                1. Oxford, technically.

                2. I invited him and he said he wished he could but he has another engagement. That said, he’s going to put up a post about it (I hope).

              2. Good call. Fuck the Hokies.

                /wahoowa

                1. ^^This. Even if the Hoos go 2-10 again.

  8. Well, loathe though I am to admit it, this particular example seems to put paid the notion that rioting is ineffective and counterproductive. It seems to me that the people who have been “following the rules” and complaining to supervisors and whatnot are not getting the kind of results the people of Ferguson are getting.

    1. Just a little bit of rioting and suddenly the Governor acknowledges their existence.

      1. Okay, so riots got him to acknowledge that the original shooting might be a problem.

        So what would it take for them to face up to the disastrous handling of the riots themselves? Godzilla?

  9. Clearly the solution here is to throw away due process and railroad a victim to satiate the mob. Yeah, that will help. This is what craven cowardice looks like. If there wasn’t a riot, he would happily let cops get away with the worst of crimes because he likes their unions’ money. Now that we have a riot, Nixon is happy to convict a cop regardless of the facts because he wants the issue to go away.

    1. There’s no fair trial in the future, it would seem.

    2. You’ve got it exactly backwards. By calling for “vigorous prosecution”, the governor has made certain that the cop at worst wins freedom on appeal.

      1. Not true. It takes a lot more than a lose lipped governor to overturn a jury verdict.

        1. But now the defense gets to play the “railroaded” card.

          1. It won’t help/. If it did, no one would ever get railroaded.

  10. “may have been a shoplifter”? Seriously?

    1. I love how the media think it is relevant that Brown had pot on him. It is looking more and more like Brown attacked the cop and the cop was right to shoot him. Unless pot has been turned into a deadly weapon, however, the fact that he had a loaded join on him doesn’t really or shouldn’t really help the cop’s case.

    2. Yeah, this “shoplifting” thing is annoying. I heard Sharpton saying it, too.

      It’s shoplifting when you put some property of the store in your clothing, or in a bag. It becomes robbery at the point where you are caught by the store owner, and assault him. And then come back to threaten him again because he had the audacity to say something after you assaulted him the first time.

      This was shoplifting + the added element of force/threatened force. Commentators need to get it right.

  11. I agree, pot smoking has nothing to do with this beyond smearing Brown. Also agree that the fact that Brown robbed a convenience store 10 minutes before encountering Wilson makes the “he charged me” version far more likely.

    1. Brown wasn’t using his brain, if he had one.

    2. The cop, at least as being reported, having a broken eye socket does too. If that is true, the cops here have really set a new standard in incompetent public relations. They knew immediately the nature of the cop’s injuries. Yet somehow they managed not to mention it until what, two weeks after the shooting? How can anyone be that fucking stupid?

      1. Whatever the rights and wrongs of the particular case are, Ferguson PD continues to display the tendencies of cops to act like the biggest, best armed, and baddest gang on the block.

        1. That is not fair to gangs. Gangs are much smarter about interacting with the public.

        2. Because other gangs don’t have badges.

      2. They managed not to reveal any exonerating information until several million in property damage later. I wonder if Ferguson’s cops will get a bigger budget next year…

    3. And a blowout socket fracture is 100% consistent with a punch from a downward angle, Tall person punching person seated in a vehicle. Having said all that, the Ferguson PD eff’d the post shooting situation to an incomprehensible degree.

      1. The eye socket fracture still sounds awfully shady to me. If it were true, why wouldn’t the Ferguson PD be screaming it at the top of their lungs? It would be the strongest thing they could say to defend their guy. I have no idea why they’d kept that info so quiet. Plus, Jim Hoft (hardly an impartial voice) is the only one running with it.

        Until there’s some kind of official confirmation, I’m considering that claim as bullshit.

        1. Good point. I agree with u.

        2. If it were true, why wouldn’t the Ferguson PD be screaming it at the top of their lungs?

          The usual suspects on both sides had their minds made up before the incident. If the Ferguson PD had come out with the broken eye socket story, it wouldn’t have changed anyone’s mind.

      2. Having said all that, the Ferguson PD eff’d the post shooting situation to an incomprehensible degree.

        So much this.

  12. Even if you grant that the cops’ story is 110 percent true up until the last round cleared the barrel, that doesn’t begin to address the real issues and problems here.

    1. Maybe. One thing that the lying scumbag media is ignoring is that 73 of 78 people arrested during this were not from Ferguson.

      http://www.breitbart.com/Breit…..Residents/

      It almost makes you think this whole thing is staged or something?

      Moreover, if the cop turns out to be justified, then this case doesn’t illustrate much of anything other than that the police are epically stupid they managed to create a riot even when they were right. People assumed the worst in this case because the cops were their usual “fuck you we will look at this when we damn well please” attitude. That is certainly a problem but not quite the one people think this case addresses.

      1. That is certainly a problem but not quite the one people think this case addresses.

        And that’s true on both the cop-loving right and the race-baiting left.

    2. True, but it does mean Wilson is not cold blooded murderer.

      1. Doesn’t mean he is either.

    3. Well, no, but that’s exactly why this kind of piece is counterproductive. Writing something this nonchalant about what exactly happened allows it to get dragged down into the kind of racial box that these things usually get stuffed into, instead of taking a wider view of the state of policing in America. This kind of bombastic crap:

      “Let’s remember that this specific incident started with the shooting, at least six times, of an unarmed man who may have been a shoplifter, and who was apparently not suspected of that crime, but was instead stopped for walking in the street.”

      is just as shallow as the Team Red “durrrr thug attacking innocent copz!” knee-jerk response. IObviously it’s perfectly legitimate to have serious doubts about the shooting because an unarmed man was gunned down, but given the known information I don’t think it’s conclusive that Brown didn’t try to charge Wilson (and, as others have pointed out, the generally sorry marksmanship of your average cop lends credence to the idea that this occured at fairly short range). We’ll see what the grand jury determines, and I’d imagine we’ll learn more of the concrete facts in the process. In the meantime, I really am not a fan of the mob justice mentality.

      If this plays out a la Kelly Thomas, I’ll start yelling and screaming. Until then, I’ll wait and see.

      1. That is well said. But it is way too much to expect the media to do any leg work or make sure they actually know what the hell happened before they start making assertions.

      2. I think you point to a few important issues here, and how the overarching themes tend to be loss in the partisan bickering — though the overarching issues themselves may be thought to be different things, depending on the lens through which someone views this fiasco.

        Doubt we’ll learn much from the grand jury proceedings, though. In addition to being secret, it’s really only the prosecutor’s accusations that are trotted out there.

    4. *that doesn’t begin to address the real issues and problems here.*

      Yes, the real problem is, we have a huge underclass of citizens in this country who think they can steal from other citizens whenever, wherever they want–and when the police try to stop them, they can attack them. And if one of their lot gets killed, they can burn down unrelated buildings and businesses.

      That’s the real problem.

      And it’s just going to get worse.

      Yet, libertarians seem to be stuck on stupid cop-hate, 24×7.

      1. Cops are stuck on stupid civil-rights hate, 24X7.

      2. Wow. If this^ is what cops really believe, I guess they DO recruit from among the, er, least mentally able among us.

      3. If it were limited to stopping crimes, then you’d have a point. But arresting journalists, grounding media aircraft, putting APCs on streets and indiscriminately attacking protestors with riot control weaponry is not “trying to stop” anything; it’s pure power play.

        1. Journalism IS a crime.

          Why do you hate America?

      4. And I will stop the cop-hate when they begin to hold their own accountable for misconduct. There is no such thing as a good cop. There are bad cops and cops that look the other way when the bad cops misbehave.

  13. I’m sure the chief will be brought up on charges of obstructing justice.

  14. “A vigorous prosecution” (carried out according to due process, and not out of panic, one hopes, though we’re in politician country here) is a first step.

    I would have thought that the first step should be an investigation to determine whether prosecution was warranted, but I guess I should defer to those wiser and better than me.

  15. we have a huge underclass of citizens in this country who think they can steal from other citizens whenever, wherever they want–and when the police try to stop them, they can attack them. And if one of their lot gets killed, they can burn down unrelated buildings and businesses.

    That’s the real problem.

    Savages, FTW!

    1. pffft….that movie sucked.

  16. “Due process” only includes being hustled off into anonymous seclusion with round the clock protection if the killer happens to be a cop.

  17. Jay Milhous Nixon: Yeah, that’s fitting quite nicely.

  18. …a Ferguson police officer shot unarmed Michael Brown at least six times…

    The “unarmed” bit is getting old.

    Unarmed teens have engaged in flash mob attacks, polar bear punching, and wildings numerous times. They have gotten away with it because their victims have not been armed. Supposing you were out on the street, are assaulted by a flash mob, pull out your CCW, and blow away one of the mobsters. That would be shooting an unarmed teen. So would you still do it? Would you instead let you and your family be beaten into the sidewalk because unarmed teens are a special class, above the law?

    Thing is, libertarians make a big production out of the right to bear arms as a means to self defense. Incidents like Ferguson are being used by the gun grabbers as one more means to make firing in self defense into a taboo. Why is Reason going along with this?

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