Ferguson Protest Organizer: Shooting Suspect Was ‘Set Up’ By Police

An area protest organizor and pastor stunned MSNBC host Tamron Hall on Monday when he said that the suspect charged with shooting two Ferguson, Mo. police officers was “set up” by law enforcement.

On Sunday, St. Louis County prosecutors charged Jeffrey Williams, 20, with shooting two police officers last week during a demonstration outside the Ferguson Police Department. According to the Associated Press, Williams told investigators that he wasn’t targeting the officers.

In an interview on Monday, the Rev. Derrick Robinson, one of the organizers of the protest, told Hall that he had met with Williams on Sunday. Hall asked Robinson about a rumor that the suspect was trying to shoot at someone who robbed him that day.

Robinson confirmed that Williams claimed he’d been robbed. What he said next had Hall grasping for words.

“And I think, I believe he was frustrated, and I really believe he was set up, and I really believe that. I know it may not —”

“Set up by who? Let me pause you on that. Set up by who?” Hall asked.

“Police,” Robinson answered, looking off screen for a moment. “I think he was set up, I would go even farther to say some of the police, you know. The story just does not add up.”

“Let me, I can’t let you — obviously I can’t let you say that he was set up by police,” Hall shot back. “What evidence or proof do you have of that?”

Hall added that Williams has reportedly confessed and was found with a handgun that matched shell casings at the scene.

Robinson said that Williams was “coerced,” beaten by police and was not allowed to seek counsel. “The police, they beat him to confessing.”

“We do not have any evidence and you have not provided any of that to me at this point and if you have, we will continue the interview with you,” Hall said.

The two stepped over each others’ words before an awkward end to the interview.

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