Does Ferguson Mayor’s Protest Prediction Hint At Grand Jury Decision?

Ferguson’s mayor has spoken out about his concern that the Grand Jury decision in the Michael Brown case might provoke protests, and further unrest among the city’s population. Is this a hint about what the mayor believes that decision will be?

According to the Blaze, hacktivist group Anonymous announced last month that they had received leaked documents, saying that Darren Wilson would be acquitted, and that the announcement would come on November 10.

Though there was no way to verify the claims, and inaccurate information has been leaked or shared in the case before, there are some other pieces of information that hint that Ferguson is facing hard times, even before Ferguson’s mayor spoke out.

Protestors have shared images of streets in Ferguson, with shops boarded up.

A strip of businesses on West Florissant #Ferguson

— ShordeeDooWhop (@Nettaaaaaaaa) November 8, 2014

A photo from one of the many Twitter accounts purported to belong to Anonymous is said to show Ferguson police stockpiling armored cars and other military equipment.

Now, Ferguson Mayor James Knowles tells CNN that he is expecting large-scale demonstrations after the Grand Jury announces their decision. The mayor is calling for Ferguson authorities to “prepare for the worst.”

All of this appears to point to Anonymous being correct, since protests in Ferguson have largely been carried out so far by those calling for Darren Wilson’s arrest and conviction.

Since the shooting, there have been widespread protests in Ferguson, though many of the reports of “rioting” have been shown to be inaccurate, and many others remain unsubstantiated. Despite this, some businesses have closed their doors to all people they associate with protestors, and a pizzeria owner reportedly pulled a gun on protestors at one point, according to the Daily Banter.

The protesters in Ferguson have stated an intent to stay and keep protesting until a conviction occurred, despite such incidents as finding a noose in camp, having their campsite shut down, and signs and other materials discarded or confiscated Additionally, people have been frequently arrested or told to leave protest areas.

However, evidence is mounting that a conviction isn’t what can be expected. The leak from Anonymous may have been the first overt and public statement that the Ferguson officer will be acquitted, but many have expressed the sentiment all along.

There’s been a great deal of support from Ferguson public officials for Darren Wilson, and no significant demilitarization of the police department, despite calls for it. This latest announcement from the Ferguson mayor, saying he expects protests, is one more reason to think that Darren Wilson might walk free.

[photo credit: Light Brigading]