The Michael Brown shooting which prompted the Ferguson riots in Missouri are being taken over for investigation by the FBI. The shooting death of the unarmed black man sparked the destruction of private property and nationwide headlines over the weekend. Why the rioters and looters chose to attack parked cars and stores without any ties to the victim or the police remains unknown.
The chief of police in Ferguson, which is located near St. Louis, was told today that the FBI would be looking into the shooting death of Michael Brown. The 18-year-old man was shot multiple times during a police confrontation on Saturday.
Rioters headed to the streets on Sunday evening after a massive protest over the shooting of the unarmed black man took place earlier in the day. The NAACP demanded an FBI investigation into the incident, and St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley had made a similar request as well. John Gaskin, a member of the local chapter of the NAACP, said the group wanted the FBI to take charge of the Michael Brown shooting case to make sure the probe was both “thorough” and “transparent.”
St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar had this to say about the parallel FBI investigation:
“The bureau will take a lot of the information we have developed already through our investigation. They wil take that investigation and they may do their own interviews and take a look at the evidence themselves. We will share our information with Prosecutor McCulloch’s office and at the same time with the FBI.”
Hundreds of rioters reportedly yelled, “Kill the police” during the looting. Spray painted signs appeared in several locations throughout the city during the Ferguson riots, including one which read, “The only good cop is a dead cop.”
Michael Brown’s grandmother Desiree Harris said she was driving in her suburban neighborhood on Saturday afternoon when she saw her grandson walking a few blocks from her house. According to Harris, it was only a few moments after she arrived home that she heard a commotion outside and ran to see what was going on. Once outside Harris reportedly saw her grandson’s body on the sidewalk.
The teenager was reportedly unarmed and shot multiple times by a Ferguson police officer around noon at the Canfield Green apartment complex. Brian Schellman, a St. Louis County Police representative, said that several hundred people quickly exited the apartment buildings after the shooting but offered no comment on what may have prompted the police action.
Police officers from approximately 15 area departments arrived on the scene of the Michael Brown shooting after a second burst of gunfire was heard. According to Schellman, about 60 officers were dispatched to the Ferguson neighborhood. The quick and expansive aid response from law enforcement may have occurred because the Missouri town is located just a couple of miles from downtown St. Louis.
Benjamin Crump, the lawyer who represented the Trayvon Martin family, will also be representing the Michael Brown family.
[Image Via: David Carson/St. Louis Post-Dispatch]