Here Is How The Prosecutor Described The Michael Brown Shooting

In announcing Monday that Ferguson, Mo., police officer Darren Wilson would not be charged in the Aug. 9 death of Michael Brown, St. Louis County prosecutor Bob McCulloch provided the most detailed account yet of what led to the shooting and the shooting itself.

McCulloch emphasized that the grand jury had heard from witnesses who had not spoken to the press and reviewed the entirety of the physical evidence. “They are the only people who have heard and examined every witness and every piece of evidence,” he said.

This is the version of events that McCulloch gave Monday night while announcing the grand jury’s decision.

At 11:45 a.m. CT on Aug. 9, Wilson responded to a call at an apartment complex about an infant who was having trouble breathing. At 11:53 a.m. CT, Wilson heard a police radio broadcast about a convenience store robbery in progress.

Wilson left the apartment complex around that time and heard a description of the suspect, who was Brown. As Wilson was driving down the street, he encountered Brown and his friend. Wilson slowed or stopped his car and told them to move to the sidewalk. “Words were exchanged,” as McCulloch put it Monday, and Brown and his friend continued to walk down the street.

Wilson then radioed that he needed his assistance and backed up his car to block their path. An altercation then took place at the police car with Wilson seated inside and Brown standing outside the driver’s side window. Two shots were fired during that initial part of the altercation. The altercation was described as a “tussle” or “tug-of-war” by witnesses. Some said that Brown had punched Wilson. Wilson had some swelling and redness to his face after the shooting, McCulloch said.

Brown ran and Wilson chased him. Brown then stopped and moved toward Wilson, several more shots were fired and Brown was fatally injured. What happened between the altercation and the fatal shots varied some depending on the witness, McCulloch said.

Some witnesses said that Wilson fired at Brown as he chased him. Others said that Wilson did not fire until Brown turned to face him and moved toward him. One witness said that Brown went at Wilson at “full charge.” Most said that Wilson shot at Brown as Brown moved toward him.

Some witnesses said that Brown did not move toward Wilson and had his hands raised, but McCulloch said that “many” of those witnesses later admitted that they did not actually see the shooting. Some witnesses described Brown’s hands as raised, others said that they were in front of his chest or clenched in fists.

A total of 12 shots were fired. Brown was shot at least six times. The entire incident lasted less than 90 seconds.

Dear Reader,

When we asked recently what makes TPM different from other outlets, readers cited factors like honesty, curiosity, transparency, and our vibrant community. They also pointed to our ability to report on important stories and trends long before they are picked up by mainstream outlets; our ability to contextualize information within the arc of history; and our focus on the real-world consequences of the news.

Our unique approach to reporting and presenting the news, however, wouldn’t be possible without our readers’ support. That’s not just marketing speak, it’s true: our work would literally not be possible without readers deciding to become members. Not only does member support account for more than 80% of TPM’s revenue, our members have helped us build an engaged and informed community. Many of our best stories were born from reader tips and valuable member feedback.

We do what other news outlets can’t or won’t do because our members’ support gives us real independence.

If you enjoy reading TPM and value what we do, become a member today.

Latest News
Comments
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Reporters:
Newswriters:
Director of Audience:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Publisher:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: