Tuesday night, members of Mothers of the Movement, a group that includes Geneva Reed-Veal, the mother of Sandra Bland; Gwen Carr, mother of Eric Garner; Sybrina Fulton, mother of Trayvon Martin; Lucia McBath, the mother of Jordan Davis; Maria Hamilton, the mother of Dontre Hamilton; Cleopatra Cowley-Pendleton, the mother of Hadiya Pendleton; Wanda Johnson, mother of Oscar Grant; and Lezley McSpadden, mother of Michael Brown, appeared on stage together at the Democratic National Convention. Watch the Mothers of the Movement video below.
John McNesby, president of the Philadelphia police union, said Hillary Clinton should be ashamed for allowing relatives of people killed by police to speak, but not give equal time to families of fallen officers. Others have expressed similar sentiments and some have criticized Lezley McSpadden presence because they believe Darren Wilson was justified in shooting Michael Brown.
Obviously, some police officers still don't get it. Officers committing crimes and then policing each other resulting in no accountability is unacceptable. With the exception of Travon Martin's mother, each of those moms had their child killed by police or while in police custody. No police officer was held accountable for any of those deaths.
If the people who kill police officers were routinely not being charged or not held accountable, I could understand why they might want equal time to complain about the injustice of having a loved one killed and the known killer being allowed to go free. However, in just about every case I can think of, the killers of police officers usually get killed themselves or go to prison.
Marilyn Mosby the state's attorney who brought charges against six police officers but failed to secure any convictions in the death of Freddie Gray while in the custody of Baltimore police gave a fiery defense of her investigation and alleged police corruption.
Ms. Mosby still believes those officers are responsible for Freddie Gray's death. She revealed what many already knew and what has become a theme during this year's election, "the system is rigged" in favor of the police. This is why it is important to video incidents of police encounters. Videos help remove reasonable doubt when police officers unreasonably invoke "I feared for my life". See, "Why White Cops Kill Black Men".
Updates From our News Page:
8-1-2016: Law professor goes after Maryland prosecutor for Freddie Gray case
An unarmed man was killed while in police custody, but instead of getting upset that no one was held accountable, a white law professor wants to bring ethic charges against the black prosecutor for seeking justice. This is clearly an intimidation tactic to remind uppity black prosecutors to stay in their place in regards to white police officers. This is why we need more black prosecutors.
7-28-2016: Freddie Gray officers suing prosecutor Marilyn Mosby
Prosecutors have prosecutorial discretion proving prosecuting attorneys with nearly absolute powers to determine whether or not to bring criminal charges, deciding the nature of charges, plea bargaining and sentence recommendation. Prosecutorial immunity is the absolute immunity that prosecutors in the United States have in initiating a prosecution and presenting the state's case. The U.S. Supreme Court in 1976 ruled that prosecutors cannot face civil lawsuits for prosecutorial abuses, no matter how severe." See, Imbler v. Pachtman 424 U.S. 409 (1976). However, I believe that is one of the major flaws in our judicial system. This was a very agressive move by the police officers, especially when they may still face Federal charges for the death of Freddie Gray.
Since the killing of Michael Brown, there have been many instances where police officers, in situations just like Darren Wilson, have used self-defense as an excuse and then a video surfaced proving their statements to be lies. Unfortunately, no video of the actual shooting of Michael Brown has been made public.
On September 5, 2014, the U.S. Department of Justice began an investigation of the Ferguson, Missouri police department to examine whether officers routinely engaged in racial profiling or showed a pattern of excessive force. The investigation was separate from the Department's other investigation of the shooting of Brown.
The 102 page Department of Justice "Investigation of the Ferguson Police Department Report" was released on March 4, 2015. The report concluded that police officers in Ferguson routinely violated the constitutional rights of the city's residents, by discriminating against African Americans and applying racial stereotypes, in a "pattern or practice of unlawful conduct".
That same day, March 4, 2015, the DOJ released a memorandum concerning the Investigation of the Michael Brown Shooting Death by Darren Wilson.
Darren Wilson didn't receive a not guilty verdict
Media reports and headlines such as the Washington Post article, "Officer Darren Wilson cleared by the Justice Department", gave the false impression that the allegations against Wilson were meritless and that he was totally exonerated.
On page 13 of the memorandum, the first paragraph states, "As Wilson drove past Brown, he saw cigarillos in Brown’s hand, which alerted him to a radio dispatch of a “stealing in progress” that he heard a few minutes prior while finishing his last call. Wilson then checked his rearview mirror, and realized that Witness 101 matched the description of the other subject on the radio dispatch."
Below is the video of a press conference where Ferguson Police Chief, Thomas Jackson, among other things, discusses the convenience store incident where Brown allegedly stole cigarillos. At around 6:05 in the video's timeline, Jackson states that Wilson had no knowledge of the robbery.
Below is a compilation of witness interviews explaining what they saw when Michael Brown was shot. The witnesses are listed in order of their first appearance on the compilation along with their witness number and page number as listed on the DOJ memorandum. Watch the video and read the memorandum and decide for yourself the credibility of the witnesses.
- Michael Brady, Witness #115 – page 39
- Piaget Crenshaw, Witness #118 – page 56
- Tiffany Mitchell, Witness #127 – page 55
- Dorian Johnson, Witness #101 – page 44
Piaget Crenshaw (witness #118) who witnessed the entire incident actually shot video immediately after Michael Brown shooting while Darren Wilson was still looking over the body. Ms. Crenshaw was interviewed by CNN which is shown below.
Personally, I believe the witnesses. Their stories are very similar. Multiple people from various vantage points all claim the same basic facts. Michael Brown was unarmed, hand his hands up or at least exposed to show he was unarmed, Brown was shot at while running away and then turned around, he posed no threat when he was killed.
A witness who thought Mr. Brown may have been shot in the back before turning around is logical even if the bullet missed. Blood splatter from an arm on the front of a t-shirt could easily make someone believe that person was shot in the stomach or chest area.
Those statements are not inconsistent, they are simply observations during an intense moment. Some of the statements made especially those captured on video immediately after the shooting of Michael Brown were excited utterances.
An excited utterance, in the law of evidence, is a statement made by a person in response to a startling or shocking event or condition. It is an unplanned reaction to a "startling event". It is an exception to the hearsay rule. The statement must be spontaneously made by the person (the declarant) while still under the stress of excitement from the event or condition. The subject matter and content of the statement must "relate to" event or condition. The statement could be a description or explanation (as required for present sense impression), or an opinion or inference. Examples include: "Look out! We're going to crash!" or "I think he's crazy. He's shooting at us!" The basis for this hearsay exception is the belief that a statement made under the stress is likely to be trustworthy and unlikely to be premeditated falsehoods.
You must also keep in mind that the so-called justice system plays out more like a complicated chess game involving multiple strategies. History teaches us that propaganda and deception are great strategies.
Suppose for example multiple witnesses were instructed to provide false testimony so that their false testimony could be used to discredit truthful witnesses. Those types of strategies were used by the government's CointelPro campaign to discredit civil rights leaders.
Watch the November 25, 2014, clip of Lawrence O'Donnell from The Last Word where Lawrence provides a common sense analysis of Darren Wilson's testimony, witness number 10 and prosecutor Robert McCulloch.
Many people mistakenly believe the Department of Justice report relating to Darren Wilson shooting Micheal Brown was a declaration of Wilson's innocence, it wasn't. Basically, there was no video of the event, so there was not enough evidence to secure a conviction in court beyond a reasonable doubt. That doesn't mean that Darren Wilson was justified in his actions, only that no evidence exist that is strong enough to convict him. If a video surfaces sometime in the future, similar to what happened in the Jason Stockley fatal shooting Anthony Lamar Smith, Darren Wilson could still be charged with murder. There is no statute of limitations on murder.
Even the Baltimore prosecutor, Marilyn Mosby, was shocked and surprised at the level of interference she encountered from police officers during her investigation into the murder of Freddie Gray.
If the prosecutor, one of the most powerful positions within the justice system is blocked by police interference, imagine the level of interference that may have happened during the Ferguson investigation. Considering the white prosecutor in charge, Robert McCulloch, has himself been accused of bias in favor police and racist behavior, it's easy to understand how a conspiracy to conceal the truth possibly occurred.
When Robert McCulloch was 12 years old, his father, Paul McCulloch, a St. Louis police officer, was shot and killed allegedly by Eddie Steve Glenn, a black man. McCulloch's father, brother, nephew and cousin all served with St. Louis police; his mother was a clerk there. Maybe that's why he allowed witness #40 to testify before the grand jury.
A grand jury witness, convicted felon Sandra McElroy, who claimed Michael Brown charged at Darren Wilson “like a football player” is a racist, mentally ill woman who likely wasn’t there when the unarmed black teen was killed, according to reports. McElroy previously lied to police and didn’t give authorities a statement about the August 9, 2014, killing until Sept. 11, well after several descriptions of the shooting had been detailed in the media.