On Saturday, August 9, 2014, a chain of events occurred that caused the nation to collectively reexamine the power and discretion of police officers in an effort to put an end to police brutality.
On the morning of August 9th, police officers in Ferguson, Missouri, received a call relating to a robbery at a convenience store. The dispatcher then provided police officers with a description of the robber and informed police that the robber was walking towards a Quick Trip convenience store. Shortly after, a police officer encountered an individual named Michael Brown walking down a street with a friend. Brown is then shot to death as a result of the encounter.
The following day on August 10th, police officers provide the following information regarding the incident: Eighteen-year old Michael Brown was unarmed at the time he was approached by the police officer, but Brown physically assaulted the officer and shots were fired.
That same day, a candlelight vigil is held in honor of Michael Brown. However, the vigil turns violent as local businesses are vandalized and looted. Due to the increasing violence, school is cancelled the following day.
On August 11th, hundreds of individuals gather outside of the Ferguson Police Department insisting on justice for Michael Brown’s death. Brown’s parents plea for an end to the violence and demand justice for their son’s death. While the St. Louis County Police Department claims that it will release the name of the police officer who shot and killed Michael Brown, the FBI declares that it will conduct an investigation into the shooting.
Protests continue later that night in Ferguson. However, police officers employ tear gas claiming that the crowd was not protesting in a peaceful manner. Police officers continue to arrest individuals involved in the protests and the St. Louis County Police Department backtracks and states that the name of the police officer responsible for the shooting will not be released due to threats found on various social media sites.
Another protest commences and the crowd insists that the police department provide the public with certain information relating to the shooting. More individuals are arrested in relation to the protest and President Obama and the Justice Department provide statements regarding the incident and insist that they will begin investigating police tactics around the entire country.
While protests become more frequent, police continue to employ tear gas at crowds even striking several reporters and other media personnel. It is then revealed that Brown had no criminal background. Days later, as protests continue, it is revealed that a man named Darren Wilson is the police officer responsible for the shooting of Brown. It is reported that Wilson was unaware that Brown was a suspect in the convenience store robbery and instead, stopped Brown because he was walking in the middle of the street. An autopsy of Michael Brown revealed that he was shot at least six times.
On August 19th, it is reported that thirty one people have been arrested and four officers have been injured as a result of the protests. The following day, more than forty people are arrested.
This incident sheds light on police brutality and abuse of power by police. As both protests and investigations continue, the nation can only be hopeful that individual rights are protected and justice is served.
If you have been charged with a crime or think your rights have been violated, call a criminal defense attorney today. A criminal defense attorney can help resolve your case and ensure the best possible outcome. Call Pagan and Stroleny, P.L. at 305-615-1285 to schedule a free consultation with Miami-Dade and Broward Criminal Defense Attorneys Christopher Pagan and Julian Stroleny. Visit www.PSLaw.org to learn more about Pagan & Stroleny, P.L. and to find out how our experienced attorneys can help you.