Another Night of Curfew in Ferguson

Ferguson, Missouri is under a second night of curfew.

Attorney General Eric Holder ordered a third autopsy for Michael Brown, at the request of his family. The Washington Post says:

Holder’s announcement, coming one day after revelations that additional FBI agents had been dispatched to Ferguson, was the latest signal that the federal civil rights investigation of Brown’s death is escalating. The federal probe is running parallel to the state investigation, and federal officials had said they were deferring to state officials.

MO Gov. Jay Nixon took the airwaves today and among other things, criticized the release of the alleged robbery video, saying he hadn't known about it.

Highway Patrol officer Ron Johnson spoke at a rally today and addressing Brown's parents, said "I am sorry. I wear this uniform and I should say that I am sorry.”

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    I guess I'm out of touch, but (5.00 / 2) (#1)
    by toggle on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 07:55:20 PM EST
    Shouldn't releasing a video showing that the encounter was much more complicated than initial reports suggested lower tensions?

    Even with the slanted media coverage, the perception of mainstream white America remains that the black community and its leaders are just partisan and will always take the side of black people, evidence be damned-- OJ, Trayvon, now Michael Brown, to name a few. Look at that video of the witness talking about the Brown shooting before it became a cause celebre -- ignored by the mainstream media, but up to 3 million hits and counting. Link

    Unfortunately that witness will probably never be found, since, as the rioters spray painted on the quick store Brown had robbed, after they burned it, snitches get stitches.

    You can theoretically excuse the black community, given their situation and their many legitimate grievances, but don't get me started about the media and the mainstream left and how they cynically profit from these incidents. Or the justice department, saying they don't want the video to be released because it would fan the flames. Notice you didn't see them trying to stop the inculpatory stuff.

    Releasing the video (5.00 / 5) (#2)
    by MKS on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 08:09:11 PM EST
    re-ignited the protests.

    The objection, if you are sincerely wondering about this, is that the video has nothing to do with the shooting and is just an attempt to smear the victim and make it eaiser to excuse killing him.

    Your reference to the "mainstream left" will get points at Fox....But it is just trolling if you do not cite any evidence....


    Do you seriously (5.00 / 2) (#3)
    by Jack203 on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 08:41:48 PM EST
    consider the fact he was violently robbing a store less than 10 minutes before the incident to not be relevant?

    I understand you may have issues with the police, but if this is the case you push you are only going to lose credibility.


    Governor Nixon (5.00 / 2) (#4)
    by squeaky on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 08:45:39 PM EST
    Why do you think that MO Gov. Jay Nixon said:

    "Yeah, we and our security team and the highway patrol did not know that it was going to be released, and I don't think the attorney general knew that. And quite frankly we disagree deeply," said Nixon. "To attempt to in essence disparage the character of this victim in the middle of the process like this is not right."

    Does he have issues with the police too? I guess he has no credibility as far as you are concerned either.


    Isn't this the key quailier in (none / 0) (#5)
    by oculus on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 09:18:03 PM EST
    the Governor's statement?

    "in the middle of the process"

    "qualifier" (none / 0) (#6)
    by oculus on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 09:19:15 PM EST
    Yes, it appears totally irrelevant (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by MKS on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 09:50:06 PM EST
    It is an attack on character.  From a legal standpoint, "character" evidence is generally excluded.  You cannot convict or judge someone based on what they have done in the past, only what they did in the act in question.  Law school level evidence.

    Wilson did not shoot Brown because of the theft or robbery.  

    Thus, there is a decent chance that evidence of the theft or robbery would be excluded at trial if Wilson did not suspect Brown of the robbery....and there has been reports that that was the case.  And the cops who released that evidence should know this rule against character evidence.

    If you want to set aside legal concepts, whether or not the theft was violent or not, Wilson was wrong to have shot a fleeing Brown.  And if Wilson wants to claim self defense, nothing regarding the prior theft will bear on whether Wilson needed to use lethal force against Brown.  The issue would be was Brown armed?  Was he charging Wilson, as some have said?  The issue is what happened when Wilson killed him? Not what happened in the convenience store.


    It's not character evidence (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by toggle on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 10:01:54 PM EST
    First of all, this might be the court of public opinion, but it's not a real court and there are no rules of evidence.

    Second, the cop's story apparently is that he recognized Brown as a suspect in the robbery after the initial encounter. This has been discussed ad nauseum.

    Third, just because evidence bears on character doesn't mean it's going to be excluded. Even if the cop didn't suspect Brown of the robbery, this is something that had happened literally ten minutes before. Brown certainly knew what he'd done and had every reason to think he was being arrested for the robbery (as did his friend, who could be impeached on this point as he regularly said things like "we hadn't been doing anything" in interviews). It's impossible to understand the encounter without knowing that Brown was fleeing from the scene of a robbery.

    In my state we would call this the "whole story" exception. It might not be something you'd know from reading the rules of evidence, but it's very frequently applied in real cases.


    toggle, you might not be in a real court (none / 0) (#17)
    by Jeralyn on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 10:44:36 PM EST
    but this site assumes that we are. The court of opinion is for Nancy Grace, et. al. We don't do character attacks or rumors or assume guilt as to someone accused of wrongdoing. If I see them in comments, I delete the comment.

    but Brown knew he (5.00 / 1) (#14)
    by ding7777 on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 10:20:47 PM EST
    (allegedly) stole the cigars so Brown's
    reaction to a cop 10 minutes after his
    alleged theft is valid consideration.

    Valid consideration (none / 0) (#15)
    by MKS on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 10:38:18 PM EST
    For the use of deadly force???

    Sorry, if Brown was fleeing, shot in the back, and then held up his hands, and then was shot dead, as I heard an eye witness recount on Lawrence O'Donnel's show, not relevant at all what happened earlier.


    Dr. Michael Baden's autopsy (none / 0) (#20)
    by ding7777 on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 10:47:02 PM EST
    Baden said all the shots hit Brown from the front

    Jeralyn just posted it


    "all the shots hit Brown from the front" (none / 0) (#22)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 10:54:48 PM EST
    Does mean Johnson's account is (none / 0) (#23)
    by oculus on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 11:08:13 PM EST

    How long have you been reading this site? (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by toggle on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 09:21:06 PM EST
    Surely you remember the Trayvon debacle?

    How the operator told Zimmerman to stay in his car, how Zimmerman chased Martin down, how Florida has a unique "stand your ground" law that lets people get away with murder, how you can kill someone if you're afraid of them, how Zimmerman is white, etc. Too much to list.

    It'd likewise be impossible to list the commentators and politicians that lost my respect over their treatment of that case.


    What a strange question. Are not the newbie here? (none / 0) (#8)
    by oculus on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 09:36:35 PM EST
    New account, maybe (none / 0) (#10)
    by toggle on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 09:51:49 PM EST
    I've been reading this site on and off for a decade. At least I'm pretty sure I have. All of these old scoop sites look the same, and I was on k5, the original, back in the '90s.

    are there any other Scoop sites left? (none / 0) (#18)
    by Jeralyn on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 10:46:47 PM EST
    I thought we were the last dinosaur.

    Since February 2008 (none / 0) (#11)
    by MKS on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 09:55:44 PM EST
    as I recall.  Maybe a little earlier.

    I don't recognize you.  When did you start posting here?  If you were here during Zimmerman, you would know the proprietor has very speficic rules regarding the Zimmerman case....and given those rules your comment is in a way trolling--and given those rules clearly "off topic."


    OK, let's not intimidate newcomers (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by Jeralyn on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 10:47:46 PM EST
    Everyone is welcome here, so long as they follow the rules.

    White people believing (none / 0) (#16)
    by MKS on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 10:41:25 PM EST
    black people always taking the side of other black people?

    Ouch, what an awkward thing to say.  I would say that historically African Americans or Black Americans are often disbelieved in favor of White accounts.  African American life is not valued as much as White life.  That is the real issue.....


    I think that releasing the video of the robbery... (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by crimebird on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 10:19:48 PM EST
    was appropriate.   Brown's family and their supporters were depicting him as a "gentle giant" and "hoped to go to college" and arguing that those "facts" meant that there could be no good reason for the police officer accosting and then shooting him.

    As other people here have stated, the video does show that Brown was not always a "gentle giant" and whatever his education plans were, he had engaged in a violent crime very shortly before the incident.  As has also been pointed out, the police officer may or may not have known Brown and his friend were the perps in the robbery, but Brown certainly knew he was and it would not have been unreasonable for him to think he was going to be arrested.

    But like I've asked before, why can't people wait until there's more evidence in the public domain before deciding what has happened?  I for one am not going to declare the shooting justifiable or a criminal act until there is WAY more information that links back to sworn testimony and documented facts.

    I don't think appropriateness... (5.00 / 1) (#24)
    by unitron on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 11:11:27 PM EST
    ...comes into it.

    The media put in all those FOIA requests for the video, and since Brown's death pretty much made the cigar caper no longer an ongoing investigation, they couldn't use that as an excuse not to release.

    They don't have to like it, they don't have to think it's a good idea, but they do have to do it.

    Wilson's shooting of Brown, on the other hand, is very much an ongoing investigation at this point, and that lets them hold back on releasing a lot of stuff for now.


    you've made the same point over and over (none / 0) (#25)
    by Jeralyn on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 11:12:53 PM EST
    You might try that argument at another site. It's been explained by numerous commenters here, the Governor, and virtually every expert. If you have something new to add, by all means comment. If you just want to stir feathers, create an argument or repeat yourself, please do it elsewhere.

    ... as my showing an old home video at your wedding reception of your mother changing your diaper when you were a toddler, and then telling your spouse in front of all your guests that this is what he / she can expect to do for you in later years, as you become elderly and infirm.

    Nixon calls in National Guard (5.00 / 3) (#27)
    by Mr Natural on Mon Aug 18, 2014 at 09:55:24 AM EST
    I never thought I'd hear that again.  

    (No, no obvious youtube link.)

    I never dropped acid... (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by unitron on Mon Aug 18, 2014 at 11:33:15 AM EST
    ...but headlines like that are giving me severe flashbacks just the same.

    CNN is reporting (none / 0) (#26)
    by ragebot on Sun Aug 17, 2014 at 11:59:47 PM EST
    shots have been fired and the LEOs fired rubber bullets and tear gas.

    John Oliver and "Last Week Tonight" ... (none / 0) (#29)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Aug 18, 2014 at 02:51:24 PM EST
    ... explains it all to us -- and no one in authority escapes unscathed. Please pass this must-see video on.