GRAND JURY DECISION UPDATES:
Monday, November 17 3:30 PM EST
Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon declared a state of emergency Monday afternoon ahead of the grand jury decision announcement. It is unclear when the decision will be passed down.
The executive order will last for 30 days. National Guard troops will be deployed to the Ferguson, Mo., area ahead of the announcement.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, JEREMIAH W. (JAY) NIXON, GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF MISSOURI, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and Laws of the State of Missouri, including Sections 44.010 through 44.130, RSMo, do hereby declare a State of Emergency exists in the State of Missouri.
I further direct the Missouri State Highway Patrol together with the St. Louis County Police Department and the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department to operate as a Unified Command to protect civil rights and ensure public safety in the City of Ferguson and the St. Louis region.
I further order that the St. Louis County Police Department shall have command and operational control over security in the City of Ferguson relating to areas of protests, acts of civil disobedience and conduct otherwise arising from such activities.
Read more here.
Monday, November 17 12:00 AM EST
Schools in Ferguson, Mo., will get an advance notice when the grand jury makes a decision on whether to indict Darren Wilson in the killing of Michael Brown.
From KSDK: The school officials will get three hours notice if the decision is reached during the school week and 24 hours notice if the decision is made on a weekend, according to a letter posted on Hazelwood School District’s website. The time will allow schools to safely transport students home and secure campuses, said Grayling Tobias, the district’s superintendent.
“The transportation department has reviewed bus routes and will re-route buses for students who are displaced,” Tobias said in the letter announcing the advance notice. “Our security officers and law enforcement partners will provide additional security at our school campuses. Outsiders will be removed if they appear on our campuses.”
Monday, November 17 12:00 AM EST
In an effort to combat, comfort and protect the residents of Ferguson and protestors supporting the cause, activist groups are outlining “Rules of Engagement” to interact with police forces and distributing lists of supplies and safe spaces where protestors can bunker down.
Activists Johnetta Elzie and DeRay Mckesson constructed a list of resources, supplies, equipment, locations and important information — including a list of things to do in the event of an arrest — to assist protestors in the days after the decision, given there’s no indictment.
For more information, visit noindictment.org.
100 DAYS SINCE MICHAEL BROWN’S DEATH — PROTESTS PROCEED GRAND JURY DECISION
It’s been 100 days since a white police officer gunned down a black teenager in Ferguson, Mo., and a grand jury convening to determine if the officer will be indicted in the killing has yet to hand down their decision.
But protestors — even as the summer days after Michael Brown’s death turned into bitter autumn nights — have yet to turn in their chants and posters. Instead, they are braving the cold November days to march and protest against police brutality.
The day that marked the 100th day since Brown’s death at the hands of Darren Wilson was no different.
Protestors gathered outside of buildings already boarded up — stores and establishments preparing for the boiling over of tensions that occurred in August — to call for Wilson’s arrest. In University City, Mo., protestors staged a “die-in,” — a sea of bodies sprawled on the ground outlined in chalk in the middle of the street to represent the black and brown bodies killed by police violence.
Others flocked to the Ferguson police station as they’ve done for three straight months to denounce the violence.
And with no set date on a indictment decision, demonstrators have no plans to stop.
From CBS: Despite the light snowfall, Phil Gassoway kept protesting in front of the Ferguson Police Department. He says he’s not worried about protesters reacting to the grand jury decision, but is nervous about how police will respond to the expected crowds.
“Well, I want the police to leave us alone,” he said. “Let us protest peacefully like we have been protesting peacefully and stop engaging up on us, and make us react to their actions.”
Police have not yet confirmed their plan of action if Wilson is not indicted.
WHAT WE KNOW ABOUT THE CASE:
In the days following Brown’s death, eye witnesses reported the unarmed teenager attempted to de-escalate the situation when he retreated away from the police cruiser with his hands up. The Ferguson Police Department, however, tell a different story.
HERE’S WHAT WE KNOW ABOUT THE SHOOTING THAT MAY DETERMINE THE GRAND JURY DECISION:
– St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar initially claimed Brown and Wilson got into a physical confrontation that started in the police cruiser and spilled into the street. The department claims Brown attempted to grab Wilson’s gun during that altercation. Police say Wilson was taken to the hospital with injuries to his face, but have refused to disclose those injuries.
– Eye witnesses tell a different story. Brown’s friend, Dorian Johnson, told reporters the teen never attempted to grab the officer’s weapon. Johnson’s account (and a handful of other accounts from eyewitnesses) say Brown ran from Wilson with his hands in the air screaming “stop shooting!”
– Wilson’s testimony corroborates Belmar’s account. In September, the officer testified in front of the grand jury, telling them he feared for his life and shot Brown outside the vehicle. He claims that Brown punched and scratched him, leaving him with injuries.
– In the days following Brown’s shooting, police released information claiming Brown was suspected of stealing a box of cigars from the neighborhood convenience store — a move many protestors believe was a way to criminalize the teenager before Wilson’s identity was made public. Wilson, however, did not have knowledge of the alleged robbery. Wilson stopped Brown and Johnson because they were walking down the middle of the street, Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson initially said.
– Wilson’s testimony suggests that he was aware of the description of the robbery suspect (NBC: Dispatch calls obtained Friday by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch revealed that the description of the black male in the white shirt and red cap was broadcast to officers, and after dealing with another call, Wilson asked if he should help search for the alleged robbers. It is unclear whether Wilson heard the description of the suspects, but at 12:02 p.m., just two minutes after Wilson offered to help, he radioed: “Put me on Canfield with two.” Canfield is the street where Brown was shot. The audio was obtained by the Post-Dispatch under Missouri’s Sunshine Law. Ferguson police did not follow up on NBC News’ request in August for audio recordings regarding the shooting.)
– An autopsy performed by pathologist Michael Baden at the request of Brown’s family found that the teenager had been shot six times, including four times in the body and twice in the head. Baden did not find gun powder residue on the teen (he was not provided with Brown’s clothes at the time of his autopsy). The final bullet to Brown’s head, Baden says, was fatal.
– A second autopsy, performed by the St. Louis County medical examiner’s office, suggest that Brown was involved in a physical struggle inside Wilson’s car — the report shows Brown was shot in the hand at close range and there may have been gunpowder in the wound.
– A third autopsy, ordered by The Justice Department, has not been made public.
SOURCE: CBS, Twitter, NBC, KSDK | PHOTO CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES
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