Governor Jay Nixon

Gov. Jay Nixon

Yesterday, the governor of Missouri, Jay Nixon, declared a state of emergency and instituted martial law in Ferguson. This move comes ahead of the expected decision, by the St. Louis grand jury, as to whether Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson will face criminal charges for killing unarmed teen Michael Brown on Aug. 9, 2014. In the aftermath of the shooting, the city saw widespread rioting and protests as concerned citizens took to the streets to vent their frustration over the incident.

Even though there has been no word as to when the grand jury decision will be read, this move by Gov. Nixon indicates that a decision is eminent. The governor’s declaration authorizes the Missouri National Guard to be deployed in the city of Ferguson to support local police. In addition, the order puts the St. Louis County Police Department in charge of Ferguson rather than local police. Gov. Nixon said in a statement, “As part of our ongoing efforts to plan and be prepared for any contingency, it is necessary to have these resources in place in advance of any announcement of the grand jury’s decision.”

The declaration of a state of emergency and imposition of martial law has many supporters of the Brown family drawing one conclusion only, that Wilson will not be indicted.

Mo Barnes

"Mo Betta" Maurice "Mo" Barnes is a graduate of Morehouse College and Political Scientist based in Atlanta. Mo is also a Blues musician.