Teen shot six times

Autopsy shows no sign of struggle with cop

Ferguson –– An autopsy conducted for the family of Michael Brown found no evidence that he struggled with a Ferguson, Missouri police officer before his death, the pathologist in charge of the examination said today.

Police have said the 18-year-old fought with Officer Darren Wilson in the moments before he was shot in an incident eight days ago that left the young man dead, his community in turmoil and many around the nation angry and thirsty for answers.

Dr Michael Baden said no signs of a struggle were revealed in his autopsy of Brown’s body, conducted after an official examination by the St Louis County Medical Examiner’s Office.

Dr Michael Baden points to the location on his head where one of the gunshots struck Michael Brown.
Dr Michael Baden points to the location on his head where one of the gunshots struck Michael Brown.

And forensics consultant Shawn Parcells, who assisted Baden, said the findings were consistent with witness reports that Brown might have been shot as he walked away, and that he was shot again with his hands up.

Brown’s family attorney Daryl Parks said he was particularly concerned about gunshots that medical examiners hired by the family indicated came from behind and above.

“Why would he be shot in the very top of his head, a six-foot-four man?” Parks asked. “Makes no sense.”

The autopsy results are the latest development in the investigation into Brown’s death that has resulted in nightly, sometimes violent, protests in Ferguson that have prompted Missouri’s governor to declare a curfew and send in the state National Guard.

“Given these deliberate, coordinated and intensifying violent attacks on lives and property in Ferguson, I am directing the highly capable men and women of the Missouri National Guard . . . in restoring peace and order to this community,” he said in a statement.

The protests have also gained international attention. The United Nations Secretary General today issued a statement about the events in Ferguson, saying that he “hopes local and federal investigations will shed full light on the killing” of Brown. Ban Ki-moon called on authorities to ensure that people are able to assemble peacefully and urged law enforcement to abide by American and “international standards in dealing with demonstrations”.

Gunfire, tear gas and Molotov cocktails last night marked some of the fiercest clashes yet between police and protesters furious about the death of an unarmed teenager.

The family autopsy found that Brown was shot at least six times, including two shots to his head. Three of the bullets may have re-entered his body, causing additional damage, Baden said.

One wound to his arm was consistent with a witness statement that Brown was walking away and appeared to jerk, as if shot, Parcells said.

The wounds to his arm could have also have occurred while he had his hands up, possibly in a defensive posture, Parcells said.

One of the bullets entered the back of his head and came out through his eye; another –– likely the fatal wound, Baden said –– struck Brown on the top of his head and caused irreparable damage to his brain.

Family attorney Benjamin Crump said Brown probably would have been either kneeling or bending forward when he was struck with those bullets.

Brown had abrasions on his face consistent with falling onto the ground, Baden said.

He cautioned that he needed access to autopsy results, including tests on Brown’s clothes and X-rays, before making some conclusions.

But Crump said what the autopsy had already revealed had offered more than “ample” evidence to support Wilson’s arrest.

“What does this autopsy say? That the witness accounts were true, that he was shot multiple times,” Crump told reporters.

Another family attorney, Anthony Gray, implored protesters to remain peaceful.

“I can see that there is a very disturbing divide that is developing in our community,” he said today. “This is not what we initially came to the community and called for.”

As he spoke, the Missouri National Guard was preparing to deploy to Ferguson under orders from Governor Jay Nixon to restore peace.

Nixon issued the order early today after what began as peaceful protests had spiralled into disarray after two civilians were shot and injured, Missouri State Highway Patrol Captain Ron Johnson said. He said those civilians were not shot by police.

Some protesters hurled Molotov cocktails at police, and several businesses were vandalized or looted, despite the Brown family’s call for calm.

“Based on these conditions, I had no alternative but to elevate the level of our response,” Johnson said.

Officers fired tear gas into a crowd of hundreds of protesters, including children, who were marching towards a police command post despite an impending midnight curfew.

But protester Lisha Williams challenged the notion that protesters provoked officers.

“That is a lie. It was no fight, it was no shots fired,” she told CNN late last night. “All we did was march to the command centre to fall to our knees and say, ‘Don’t shoot’. And they started shooting.”

The clashes kept escalating, with St Charles County sheriff’s officials saying shots were fired in their direction.

At one point, employees at a McDonald’s restaurant locked themselves in a storage room after the store was overrun, Johnson said.

Video from CNN affiliate KSDK showed children among the protesters chanting: “Hands up, don’t shoot.”

St Louis County police said most of the crowds had dispersed after the curfew went into effect at midnight. The curfew was scheduled to end at 5 a.m. (6 a.m. ET).

But the anxiety remains. Children could not even go to school today.

“Information we received from officials on the scene late Sunday evening has contributed to concerns we have about children walking to school or waiting for buses on streets impacted by this activity,” the Ferguson-Florissant School District said on its Facebook page.


Source: (CNN)

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