An American War Zone, Ctd

by Dish Staff

The Ferguson police have released new details about the events of August 9, including the name of the officer who shot Michael Brown. Ben Mathis-Lilley and Elliot Hannon have the latest:

Ferguson police chief Thomas Jackson announced that six-year police veteran Darren Wilson is the officer who killed Michael Brown. According to Jackson, Wilson encountered Brown at 12:01 p.m. on August 9th and, by the time another officer arrived on the scene at 12:04 p.m. Brown had been shot. Jackson said that Wilson did not have a previous disciplinary record. A report handed out to reporters by Ferguson police alleges that Brown stole several boxes of cigars from a QuikTrip convenience store (later burned down in rioting) and assaulted the store’s cashier shortly before the shooting.

Ezra reacts to the news:

During Friday’s press conference, Ferguson Police Chief Tom Jackson tried to sow doubt that Brown really was One Of The Good Ones. He released stills from a “strong-arm robbery” showing someone who might be Brown grabbing a convenience-store clerk by his collar and throwing him backwards. The Good Ones don’t rob convenience stores. The Good Ones don’t assault clerks.

But this is a sick conversation. The Good Ones don’t deserve to be shot when they’re surrendering. But neither does anyone else. … If Brown surrendered, the threat was neutralized, and Wilson shot him down anyway, then the shooting was illegal whether or not Brown had previously committed a violent crime.  This case is not about whether Michael Brown was One Of The Good Ones. It’s not even about whether he robbed a convenience store. The penalty for stealing cigars from a convenience store is not death. This case is about whether Wilson was legally justified in shooting Michael Brown.