Missouri Cops Gear up for Riots As Decision Nears
• Evidence shows policeman acted in self-defense.
By Pete Papaherakles —
The Ferguson, Missouri Police Department is gearing up for trouble again in anticipation of the upcoming grand jury decision expected in mid-November, on whether to indict officer Darren Wilson for the killing of Michael Brown. Although a recent autopsy report shows evidence that Brown was the aggressor, the mainstream media continues to instigate racial tensions that could result in new riots if Wilson is acquitted by the grand jury.
According to reports, St. Louis County Police have recently purchased tens of thousands of dollars worth of tear gas and other riot ammunition and riot gear in anticipation of more street violence. The so-called “less lethal” ammunition includes smoke and gas grenades, “hornet’s nest” grenades, rubber bullets, wooden bullets, “beanbag rounds” and pepper balls. The riot gear includes riot helmets, shields, batons, shin guards and other items like plastic handcuffs.
Associated Press recently reported that Chief Sam Dotson of the St. Louis Metropolitan Police said his force recently spent $325,000 on “civil disobedience equipment,” presumably since the riots began in August.
Both the mainstream media and the Justice Department are attempting to influence the public’s perception of what the grand jury investigation might decide.
When racial tensions exploded in Ferguson after the August 9 shooting, Attorney General Eric Holder traveled to the St. Louis suburb to meet with city leaders and protest organizers and assured them that the federal government would open a civil rights investigation into the shooting of Michael Brown. But that investigation now seems unlikely to result in any charges, as there is no legal ground for them.
Still, the soon-to-be-replaced attorney general pandered to the black community on October 29 when he said, “I think it’s pretty clear that the need for wholesale change in that department is appropriate.”
On October 29, CNN reported: “The police chief in Ferguson, Missouri is expected to step down as part of the effort by city officials to reform the police department.” According to CNN, this was to happen as soon as the following week.
But Ferguson Police Chief Tom Jackson said he had no intention of resigning. The Ferguson Police Department spokesman agreed: “Ferguson chief says he has not resigned. He has not been told to resign. He has not been fired. If he leaves, it will be his choice alone.”
The official autopsy on Brown, which led to the collapse of the case against Wilson, shows that Brown was shot at close range during “a significant altercation at the car” and that foreign matter “consistent with products that are discharged from the barrel of a firearm” was found on tissue from Brown’s thumb. In addition to gunpowder residue, Brown’s blood was discovered on Wilson’s firearm, which indicates Brown tried to grab Wilson’s gun.
Documents prepared by the St. Louis County medical examiner and obtained by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reveal Brown was within inches of Wilson when shot.
Forensics tests performed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation reached a similar conclusion.
This is consistent with St. Louis County Police Department’s assertion that Wilson was “pushed back into the car” by Brown and “physically assaulted.” The frontal entry point of the bullets and the position of Brown’s body during the shooting also indicate that Brown was lunging toward Wilson and did not have his arms raised and back turned to Wilson as claimed by the mainstream media.
Despite the autopsy results putting the main premise behind the protests in Ferguson now in jeopardy, demonstrators are still calling for the arrest and prosecution of Wilson.
Anticipating the acquittal of Wilson, Reverend Al Sharpton, during a recent visit to Ferguson said: “The grand jury is tainted. The confidence of the family has been shattered. We should turn this over to the federal government.”
Socialist professor and rapper Cornel West and Missouri state Senator Jamilah Nasheed (D) were both arrested while protesting in Ferguson. Ms. Nasheed was blocking traffic by kneeling in the middle of the road with her hands raised in the “hands up, don’t shoot” pose. She was also intoxicated and in possession of a firearm.
There are two main issues at play in Ferguson. One is the deliberate misrepresentation of the shooting as the result of white racism and police brutality, which incited the riots. The other is the excessive show of a militarized police presence that resulted on account of these riots.
The police might also be complicit in inciting racial tensions by allowing Brown’s body to lie on the street for four hours and by not swiftly providing a clear report of exactly what happened during the shooting. However, the riots, which ensued as a result of a liberal bias in the mainstream media, justified the need for the militarized police state presence that followed.
Perhaps the proper tag-line for Ferguson should be, “pants up, don’t loot.”
Pete Papaherakles is a writer and political cartoonist for AFP and is also AFP’s outreach director. Pete is interested in getting AFP writers and editors on the podium at patriotic events. Call him at 202-544-5977 if you know of an event you think AFP should attend.