It’s official. The Justice Department will not prosecute former Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson on federal civil rights violations related to the shooting death of black teenager Michael Brown.
The Department of Justice said Wednesday there was no evidence that Brown put his hands up before Wilson shot him.
That’s notable because in the unrest that followed the shooting, “Hands Up Don’t Shoot” was the most popular rallying cry for protesters.
The DOJ also said it could not disprove Wilson’s claims that he feared for his safety and that its findings “do not constitute prosecutable violations under the applicable federal criminal rights statute.”
“Although there are several individuals who have stated that Brown held his hands up in an unambiguous sign of surrender prior to Wilson shooting him dead, their accounts do not support a prosecution of Wilson,” the report said.
“As detailed throughout this report, some of those accounts are inaccurate because they are inconsistent with the physical and forensic evidence; some of those accounts are materially inconsistent with that witness’s own prior statements with no explanation, credible or otherwise, as to why those accounts changed over time.”
Translation: Witnesses lied.
The report did claim that blacks are disproportionately targeted for traffic stops, petty citations and excessive police force.
“We hope that the Justice Department’s finding that the Ferguson Police Department had a pattern and practice that violates the First, Fourth, and 14th Amendments of the Constitution, will result in an overhaul of the department,” National Action Network President Reverend Al Sharpton said in a statement.
“As Martin Luther King Jr. said, ‘Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle,’” the statement continued. “We will continue to fight until we see that change come.’”
Neither the DOJ or Sharpton said a word about how they can get Darren Wilson his reputation back, or help him earn a living after all but publicly convicting the man, forcing him to resign from his job and painting a target on his back.
Perhaps in the end it will be Wilson who has a lawsuit to pursue.
No word if any refunds are being offered for the “Hands Up Don’t Shoot” T-shirts.
#MichaelBrown's parents say if change comes out of #Ferguson then "our son's death will not have been in vain." pic.twitter.com/R4Kd2Zxnr2
— Jason Sickles (@jasonsickles) March 4, 2015
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