Darren Wilson cleared by Justice Department in shooting of Michael Brown


It has been seven months since unarmed teen Michael Brown was gunned down by former Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson. The shooting sparked a rebirth of social consciousness across the world with the slogan “Hands up! Don’t shoot” as well as “Black Lives Matter” and caused rioting in Ferguson, Missouri.

Despite a recent Justice Department report that indicated systematic discrimination of Blacks by the Ferguson Police Department, Wilson will not face any federal charges related to killing Brown. The Justice Department found that Wilson was acting in apparent self-defense when he killed the unarmed teen. An excerpt from the report reads in part:

“According to these witnesses, who are corroborated by blood evidence in the roadway … Wilson fired at Brown in what appeared to be self-defense and stopped firing once Brown fell to the ground.

“There is no evidence upon which prosecutors can rely to disprove Wilson’s stated subjective belief that he feared for his safety.”

The conclusion of the report was feared but not unexpected because of the high standards required for federal civil rights violations. Outgoing Attorney General Eric Holder stated “I concur with the investigative team’s judgment and the determination about our inability to meet the required federal standard of proof.”

The family of Michael Brown issued a written statement in which they were saddened about the decision but said that “It is our hope that through this action, true change will come not only in Ferguson but around the country. If that change happens, our son’s death will not have been in vain.”

The attorney for Darren Wilson could not be reached for comment.

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