PoliticsNation, Friday, August 15th, 2014
Read the transcript from the Friday show
August 15, 2014
Guest: Antonio French; Freeman Bosley Jr.; Ron Johnson; Patricia Bynes,
Lisa Bloom, Martin Luther King III
REVEREND AL SHARPTON, MSNBC ANCHOR: Thanks to you for tuning in. Breaking
news out of Ferguson, Missouri, where it`s been a rollercoaster day of
dramatic events around the deadly shooting of unarmed teenager Michael
And we start tonight with these two images. On the left, a picture
released by Ferguson police this morning of Michael Brown apparently
robbing a convenience store last Saturday, taking a box of cigars. On the
right, Michael Brown`s body just minutes after leaving that convenience
store where he was shot by a police officer.
The surveillance video and incident report were released around 10:00 a.m.
And police left the impression that Brown was shot by an officer pursuing
him because of a theft. But five hours later, the police chief came back
to the cameras and dropped this bombshell that the two incidents the two
incidents are not connected.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
THOMAS JACKSON, FERGUSON POLICE CHIEF: This robbery does not relate to the
initial contact between the officer and Michael Brown.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: You`re telling us that when the officer
stopped Michael Brown the first time, he was not aware that Brown was a
suspect in a robbery?
JACKSON: No. He was just coming off of a sick case.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: You are saying -- what are you saying, chief?
Did he know that he was a suspect in a case or did he not know?
JACKSON: No, he didn`t.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: It had nothing to do with the stop.
JACKSON: Nothing to do with the stop.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: So why did he stop him? At this point, why
did he stop Michael Brown?
JACKSON: Because they were walking down the middle of the street, blocking
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: It was an amazing moment. The police chief saying the robbery
does not relate to why Michael Brown was stopped. Late today at a press
conference call by the Brown family, Michael Brown`s cousin reacted to the
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ERIC DAVIS, MICHAEL BROWN`S COUSIN: Whatever that took place there had
nothing to do with an individual are getting down on his hands and knees,
raising his hands in the air and saying, don`t shoot. This is a universal
call for "I surrender." And I can hear my cousin`s voice now as I speak
saying "don`t shoot." Yet still the officer stepped to him and shot him is
what we are hearing from the officer. And that`s wrong.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: So all of this takes away from the only question that matters.
And that`s why we must return to this image because we still don`t know
what happened. Where are the police reports? How many shots were fired?
How long did he go without medical attention?
Joining me now is Attorney Freeman Bosley, Jr., who represents Dorian
Johnson, a friend of Michael Brown and a witness of the shooting. He`s
also the former mayor of St. Louis and partner in the firm Bosley, Williams
and also Antonio French, a St. Louis alderman who has been on the ground in
Ferguson all week.
Antonio, what`s your reaction and the reaction of residents around the
community on the police today?
ANTONIO FRENCH, ST. LOUIS ALDERMAN: Well, I was very disappointed. We
came off a night of peace. Our first night of peace here in Ferguson in
quite a while. And we had a lot of momentum going into today. I`m very
hopeful about peace continuing throughout the week. And I just can`t
understand why the chief would choose that exact moment to put out some
information that was completely unrelated to what we are all here about.
The only effect it could have was a negative one. And that is to damage
the reputation of a young man who died long before his time.
SHARPTON: Now Attorney Bosley, your client Dorian Johnson was named in the
incident report are as being with Michael Brown during the robbery. What`s
FREEMAN BOSLEY JR., ATTORNEY: Reverend, can you hear me?
BOSLEY: Did you hear that sound?
BOSLEY: Reverend, did you hear that sound?
SHARPTON: No, I didn`t.
BOSLEY: Flip-flop. That`s exactly what it is. That`s exactly what it is.
He released a tape. And shortly thereafter he comes back and has to admit
that the tape and incident had nothing to do with the killing of Mike
I think what is happening here, these people are all over the place. They
have lost all credibility. Of course Dorian was there with Mike when the
incident occurred. We`ve got it on tape. Several days ago we met with the
FBI, the justice department, the prosecutor`s office, representatives of
the prosecutor`s office. We laid that out. The interview lasted for three
hours. Mike told him about the cigarellos. I`m sorry, not Mike, Dorian
told him about the cigarellos. He told him what big Mike did.
SHARPTON: Wait a minute. Just a second.
BOSLEY: So everybody knew. Everybody knows about this.
SHARPTON: Let me get this right, Attorney Bosley. Your client Dorian told
the FBI, U.S. attorney and authorities about the cigarellos? So he didn`t
hide the fact that these cigarellos worth about $40 were in fact taken?
This was not hidden from the authorities?
BOSLEY: If it was that much, Reverend. Here`s the other thing. They are
referring to it as a robbery. This is not a robbery. They got the
terminology wrong. It is at best it`s shoplifting. You know, that`s what
this is called -- it is shoplifting. They are trying to say it`s a robbery
because robbery connotes violence. And that`s not what occurred here.
SHARPTON: Now, let me show you something. The other night, when you and
your client spoke with me on this show, he said Michael Brown was holding
cigarellos. Listen to this.
BOSLEY: That`s correct.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DORIAN JOHNSON, MICHAEL BROWN`S FRIEND: Mike ha a few cigarellos because
we have cigarellos in our hands. So his hands are filled. His hands are
not free. His hands are filed. He`s trying to grab any grip he can on my
friend. And he is turning around. Now, at this moment, he hands me the
cigarellos, like he says to me, hold these.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: So he told me and the national audience about the cigarellos.
You`re telling us he told the FBI the whole story. None of it related to
what happened between the police and Michael and Dorian because now the
police chief says it was unrelated. But he wasn`t even trying this so this
is a lot about nothing, really, if you`re investigating what happened at
the scene of the shooting because they are saying the officer didn`t know
it. And you`re telling me Dorian disclosed it anyway.
BOSLEY: Reverend Al, that interview lasted for three hours. They asked
him questions over and over again. They were comfortable with his
explanation as it related to the cigarellos. We then moved on to talk
about other issues, particularly what occurred at the time of the shooting.
All of this, and I think everybody knows, it`s more of a distraction than
anything else. The Ferguson police department, the St. Louis county police
department, they are upset because they have been relieved of duty. The
government came down here, took them off the case, installed the highway
patrol all over it. They are acting out like a bunch of kids. It just
like you catch a child doing something, you spank him and then he goes to
his room and start trying to tear stuff up.
SHARPTON: Now, let me go back to you, Antonio. The incident report about
the robbery refers to other reports about the shooting that have not been
released. A Ferguson police report and a St. Louis county police report.
What do you make of the fact that we have the robbery incident report, but
not two reports about the actual shooting, Antonio?
FRENCH: You know, I think it shows that the local Ferguson police
department is in over their head. And they shouldn`t be in charge of
releasing any more information. In fact, they have shown over the last
week that they are just incapable of handing the situation at all. I`m
very glad that the governor step in, put a new person in charge of safety.
Now, somebody needs to take the microphone away from the police chief
before he causes more damage.
SHARPTON: Attorney Bosley, earlier this week, the St. Louis county police
chief was on this network, in fact. And here`s what he said about the
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHIEF JON BELMAR, T. LOUIS COUNTY POLICE DEPARTMENT: He spoke to the
individuals about getting off the street and perhaps taking the sidewalk.
One of the individuals complied, the other did not. In fact, as the
officer decided to get out of his car to continue the conversation, he was
pushed back into the car. And there was a physical confrontation in that
car where, in fact, there was a struggle over the officer`s gun. We do
know, for example, that there was one shot fired within the car. And then
we are taking a look at the rest of the details of the investigation at
this point to determine exactly what happened once the police officer
exited the car.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: So this certainly doesn`t seem like an officer worried about a
robbery or shoplifting. I mean, he was talking to them about getting on
BOSLEY: That`s correct, Reverend Al. And at no time did he say, hey, did
you guys just leave out of that store? Hey, did you guys take something
from the store? Those conversations never occurred. You know, this is
just more of the same of the Ferguson police department trying to distract
people from what actually happened.
And one of the most important things to remember here, the chief was not
there. He was not there. Where is he getting his information from? He`s
getting his information obviously from the police officer. And I guess he
has reason to tell the truth at this point.
SHARPTON: Now Antonio, you have been involved in a lot of the protests.
You have been involved in a lot of the questions. I know that from being
out there myself earlier this week. What is the mood in the community
about all of this flip-flop quoting Attorney Bosley? What`s the reaction
on the ground tonight?
FRENCH: Well, the effect, at least the immediate effect is that it angered
people. People are very upset. They thought this was a negative thing.
It had nothing to do with what we are here about. And the only effect to
deal was to try to sully the reputation of the victim in this case.
But I think that the momentum out here is stronger than this latest
blunder. And I`m confident that folk out here wills keep the peace tonight
and we will have a beautiful display of democracy tonight here in Ferguson.
SHARPTON: All right, Freeman Bosley Jr. and Antonio French, thank you both
for your time tonight. Have a great and peaceful weekend and one pursuing
BOSLEY: Thank you for what you are doing for St. Louis.
SHARPTON: Thank you.
Coming up, police name the officer who shot Michael Brown to death. So
what happens now? Today, new questions about the St. Louis county
Plus, the shooting puts renewed focus on police and civil rights in our
community. Martin Luther King, III, joins me on the fight ahead.
And the rollercoaster of today. People were confused, somewhat angry. Did
it create more tension in the community? Chris Hayes has been on the
ground in Ferguson. He`ll join me live with reaction.
SHARPTON: We are back with breaking news in Ferguson, Missouri. Joining
me now is Captain Ron Johnson, the Missouri state patrol -- highway patrol
officer who took over security in Ferguson and dramatically changed the
mood in town.
Captain, thanks for being here.
CAPTAIN RON JOHNSON, MISSOURI STATE HIGHWAY PATROL: Thanks for having me,
SHARPTON: You know, a lot of people in town are angry about the
surveillance tape. What`s the mood in Ferguson tonight?
JOHNSON: There is a lot of frustration, emotions that are high versus
yesterday. But I think we are not going to let it change our stance from
yesterday. We talked about change. We talked about having a peaceful way
to speak our mind. And so, I think the mood is we are angry, we are
disappointed of whether it came out but we are not going to let it change
our stance. We are not going to let that define our community.
SHARPTON: You have been credited with helping to calm things down. You
come from that community. Does this make your job more difficult tonight
and through the weekend as the attorney before you on the segment before
you, Attorney Bosley, former mayor of St. Louis said, the flip-flop of the
day? Does this make your task more difficult?
JOHNSON: I don`t think it makes my task more difficult. I think that I
came down here today, I wanted to come here to this site so I could answer
those questions where I got answers to it. And let them know that I`m just
as disappointed in the way that came out. I have been in meetings with the
chief. We talked about the issues. But the focus should be on Michael.
And I don`t want us to get out and get upset and start vandalizing our
community. Because when this is over, we are going to need those small
businesses to sustain what we want and be vibrant.
SHARPTON: I heard you talking today personally. You grew up in Ferguson.
You talked about your children. And I know you have had to spend part of
your life letting the community know you`re law enforcement but not anti-
community. People like me that have been activists have been trying to let
people know we are not anti-police. How do we build trust when we have
things like today?
JOHNSON: Well, I think when we have things like today we don`t stand in
silence. If it`s wrong, we talk to each other and say we`ve got to do it
in a better way. And as law enforcement leaders, it would have been easy
to say today that was right, that I felt comfortable with that, but I
didn`t. And I actually went to talked to the chief. And we had good
interaction and back and forth a little bit. And we need to do things
different. We need to communicate with this community. We need to be up
front. We need to be whole. We need to give whole answers and not little
snippets of answers.
SHARPTON: What have people said to you as you walked around the scene
tonight as they expressed frustration? What have you heard and how do you
JOHNSON: They`re telling me thanks for being truthful with us. And can
you ensure that that continues? And how do you make a change that it`s not
just you doing that? And I`m telling them there are good policemen in this
state, in this county. There is good men and women that come here every
day to protect each of us.
And we just need to address the issues we need to address. If we are
wrong, and if that`s me, if it`s me being wrong. Somebody has to stand up
and say, Ron Johnson, you are doing something wrong. And you need to do it
different. If Ron Johnson says I`m not going to change they need to take
the uniform that Ron Johnson wears away from me.
SHARPTON: Let me ask you this. We have over the next several days a big
rally Sunday. I`m coming, and others. Then at some point a funeral which
is going to be emotional and challenging for the community, particularly
the teenagers that knew Michael and certainly more than anyone, his family.
Do you have any special plans on how you are going to deal with this roller
coaster of a week that we are facing?
JOHNSON: I really don`t. I really don`t. I think we are going to every
situation for what it is. But I`m not going to stop people from having
their emotions. We are going to try to do things that dignify Michael, his
family, and allow them to grieve and honor his life and his friends.
So whatever we do is going to be something to be a positive for everybody
in this case. And so, whatever the family decides, we are going to do. I
have been in touch with their attorney Anthony Gray (INAUDIBLE). Whatever
he needs from is to ensure it happens under co-attorney Antony Gray, assure
that that happen. We`ll do that. I have been in contact with the local
NAACP. And we will do whatever we can to make sure we reach out to that
family and their needs in this community.
SHARPTON: Let me ask you this. One thing that struck me as I saw footage
of people actually walking up and hugging you, embracing you, and talking
with you like you have a personal touch, something we don`t see. We
certainly didn`t see it this week before you in Ferguson. But we don`t see
it often around the country.
Explain to me that personal touch and whether that`s something you
recommend law officers around the country try and develop or try in some
way to have that kind of rapport with the people they police.
JOHNSON: I think we have to have that. You know, we talk about community
policing. Policing is getting out in the community and shaking hands and
talking and hugging and smiling and enjoying the community. So that`s a
part of what community policing is.
You know, when I went home last night, it was about 12:45, and I got on my
cell phone and called my mother. And of course, she woke up and said,
baby, what`s wrong. And I said nothing. I just want to thank you for
raising me with values, and some morals, and some understanding, some
compassion and love. And that`s what`s I`m doing today. That`s what I`m
doing. It is not out of book, it is not out of the police magazine. It is
what I`m doing. It`s just those values that I have been brought up off.
SHARPTON: Now, you also talked about your daughter. Let me play this to
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHNSON: When I got home last night my daughter sent me this. She said,
daddy, were you scared? And I said, just a little bit. She said, dad, I
want you to remember when Jesus asked Peter walk with him on the water.
And she said, when Peter got scared Jesus picked him up and said, have the
faith. And I`m telling you today we need to be just like Peter. Because I
know we`re scared. And I know we have fallen. But he`s going to pick us
up and he`s going to pick this community up.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: That was a very compelling story, the conversation with you and
JOHNSON: It was. I love her to death.
SHARPTON: Go ahead. Tell me about your daughter.
JOHNSON: My daughter is a graduate of Kansas University and really smart
girl. And I call her my angel. I call her my heart. My son, I call him
my courage. And last night she sent me that. And you know, I believe it.
I believe there are going to be days you talk about the rocky week ahead
maybe. We are going to fall. That`s could mean I`m going to fall a little
bit. But I know just like Jesus brought Peter back up that our faith will
do that. And so, I`m going to remember that. I keep that. And throughout
the day, I have been thinking about that all day.
SHARPTON: Well, a lot of people around the country were counting on you.
And this is personal to you. This is your community. This is where you
JOHNSON: Yes, it is. It`s where I ran, where I played.
SHARPTON: How is this the community -- how is the community that you`re
are standing in now that you have known all your life, how is it tonight?
JOHNSON: Tonight and last night, it is great. I noticed smiling, even
though there`s some pain. But they`re still smiling, they are hugging
hands and seeing friends they haven`t seen in a while. And I`m meeting new
friends, and friends I haven`t seen in a long time I`m seeing tonight.
So I think there is some hope. But the hope is that we`ve got to come
together. And when I look around it`s not just black faces that I see out
here. There`s white faces, there is Hispanic faces, it has Asian faces,
there is female, there is men.
A gentleman just introduced me to his three little daughters and he said,
can you talk to my daughters. I want them to not be afraid of the police.
That was very touching. And by the time I left the conversation they were
smiling. And it brought a smile to my heart.
So I see a chance for us to be better. I see a chance for us to make this
nation better for everybody that is watching. And I think we are going to
do that. And we have to do that by portraying a closeness amongst each
SHARPTON: Now, you know, as we have to deal with questions and I certainly
have hard questions about this case and other cases, but really there is a
strong sense of wanting our kids to look up to police and have role models
and not the negative role models. And I don`t think a lot of people
understand. But that`s something all of us really want is to have our
kids, like that man said to you, not be afraid of police and really to
respect and emulate them.
JOHNSON: I agreement.
SHARPTON: Have you found that kind of cooperation among the leadership
there in the community in Ferguson?
JOHNSON: The community yesterday when I walked the streets, I tell you
what. A lot of political leaders were here . But when I talked to the
governor about this morning where those activists that were here. Those
community activists like yourself that walked up to me and said, we`ve got
it. We`ve got you. You just go back. We`ve got it. And they did an
outstanding job tonight.
So it`s not about me. It`s not about the policemen out here. I tell you
those community activists that were here, those ladies that were here did a
great job. And together, we can make a difference. We can overcome what`s
SHARPTON: I`m struck by the fact that you have Michael Brown and you`re
concerned about him and you`re concerned about those young people there.
You seem to really, really feel that. And you seem to communicate that.
And I think that`s why people are responding to you, because authenticity
is something you can`t really fabricate.
JOHNSON: I agree. You know, like I said, I`ve got kids at home. I have a
young son at home that`s 21. I have young nephews and nieces. And so, as
a father, you know, my heart goes out to Michael`s parents for losing his
son. And whatever anybody`s opinion is that`s still someone`s son.
SHARPTON: Last question. And thank you for your time. What do you want
people around the country to hear from you tonight? Captain Ron Johnson,
all of the sudden you`re a national figure. What do you want the country
to hear from you tonight?
JOHNSON: I want the country to know the people of Ferguson are an
outstanding community, an outstanding group of hardworking, loving, family
people. And that they are not voicing this for attention. They`re voicing
this to make a change and make a difference. And Ron Johnson would do
everything he can to make that happen. The Missouri highway patrol, the
St. Louis county police and all the other police departments. We have to
be in this together to make a difference and come together as one.
SHARPTON: Well, I really want to thank you. And that`s what policing
should be all about. When I get back out there, I don`t know if I hug you
but I certainly want to shake your hand. I might hug your mother and I
might see about your daughter if she`s interested in the ministry, the way
she can quote the bible.
JOHNSON: I`ll tell you what. I plan to see you Sunday. I talked to --
well I have been talked to me, but he`s called me, bishop Jones.
JOHNSON: And so, my hope is I will be at the service on Sunday.
SHARPTON: Well, my hope is that we can get justice and we can get real
lasting peace and grow from this and make the change that`s good for the
community and be a model on how you deal with a crisis. And you certainly
are at the center of that.
JOHNSON: Thank you very much.
SHARPTON: Captain Ron Johnson, thank you so much for your time tonight.
JOHNSON: Thank you.
SHARPTON: We`ll be right back.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JACKSON: The officer that was involved in the shooting of Michael Brown
was Darren Wilson. He`s been a police officer for six years. Has had no
disciplinary action taken against him.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: The Ferguson police chief announcing today that 28-year-old
officer Darren Wilson shot and killed Michael Brown. But there are still
so many questions about what happened. And today`s event puts a renewed
focus on those questions.
Here is what we know. Three witnesses we have heard from all agree
something happened at a police car and Michael Brown ran away. They agree
the officer got out of the car following Brown and shooting. And they
agree Brown turned around and put his hands in the air when he was shot and
We also know he died about 35 feet away from the police cruiser. And we
also know today that this video had nothing to do with the shooting.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Why did he stop Michael Brown?
JACKSON: Because they were walking down the middle of the street blocking
traffic. That was it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: So what happens next? The man who will decide if Darren Wilson
will face charges is St. Louis county prosecuting attorney Bob McCullough.
But many are questioning, there are many questions if McCulloch should stay
on the case. The St. Louis county executive says he is looking into
getting a special prosecutor. In my view, this is a case where federal
authority should take the lead. In previous cases involving police, we
have seen federal prosecutions succeed where local prosecutions failed.
Joining me now are Patricia Bynes, a Democratic committee woman from
Ferguson and from the township of Ferguson. And Lisa Bloom, attorney and
owner of the Bloom Firm and legal analyst at avo.com. Thank you both for
LISA BLOOM, LEGAL ANALYST, TODAY SHOW: Thank you.
PATRICIA BYNES, FERGUSON COMMITTEE WOMAN: Thank you for having me.
SHARPTON: Patricia, who do you want to be investigating this shooting?
BYNES: Well, I think we have seen a couple of major blunders going on with
handling this Michael Brown case from the beginning. Today`s events are
almost unbelievable. And the call from the community from the very start
has been for a transparent and accountable investigation. And I think that
that might mean bringing in a third party to be the special prosecutor.
It`s just too much going on. And we see that with the local officials
here. There is an issue with trust with the community. So, I think it
would just be best for everyone involved to maybe look into getting a
SHARPTON: Now talking about that you know, Lisa, the St. Louis dispatch
reported today that the St. Louis County executive spoke with Missouri`s
attorney general today and asked the process to remove St. Louis County
Prosecutor Bob Mcculloch from the case. His spokesman said, quote, "The
county executive believes Bob Mcculloch is biased and shouldn`t handle this
case." Is it likely we`ve seen him taken off the case and should he be
taking off the case, Lisa?
BLOOM: He absolutely should. You know, Reverend Al, on all sides of the
aisle there is one thing we can all agree on this week. And that is, that
the Ferguson police did a terrible job policing this community. They
treated the community like they were the enemy. They brought out all the
military hardware. In one night Captain Ron Johnson was able to turn all
of that around. There seems to be only one person on planet earth who
thinks that the Ferguson police did a good job and should not have been
taken off the case. And that`s Prosecutor Bob Mcculloch. He has got to
go. I mean, he is exhibiting terrible judgment and a bias towards the
local police. It`s a local police officer who should be facing charges.
SHARPTON: You know, Lisa, in following up your point, Bob Mcculloch
criticized the Missouri governor for replacing county police with state
highway patrol to supervise things at Ferguson. He said, quote, "It`s
shameful what he did today. He had no legal authority to do that. To
denigrate the men and women of the county police department is shameful."
Was that appropriate, Lisa?
BLOOM: It was completely inappropriate and show terrible judgment. There
is absolutely no way anyone can justify what the Ferguson police did this
week -- pointing automatic weapons at peaceful demonstrators. Are you
kidding me? This is the man we are supposed to trust to decide whether or
not charges should be brought. And P.S., as you point out, we have three
witnesses now who say Mike Brown had his hands up at the time that he was
shot execution-style. Why have charges not yet been brought? How many
young African-American citizens do we need to outweigh the testimony of one
local police officer? I mean, this is appalling.
SHARPTON: Let me go back to you, Patricia Bynes. We have heard from three
eyewitnesses so far. And they sound pretty similar. Listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: He`s running this way. He turns his body towards this
way. Hands in the air. Being compliant. He gets shot in the face and
chest and goes down and dies.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: A shot struck my friend in the back. He then stopped
where he was going and stopped to turn around with his hands in the air.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Michael`s body jerked as if he was hit. He turned
around, put his hands up. And the officer continued to walk up on him and
shoot him until he goes all the way down to the ground.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: What do you in the community want to see happen, Patricia Bynes?
BYNES: Well, you know, first of all, Reverend, it`s hard to hear that
testimony. After the events of today, think about the way that they have
tried to paint this young man. And that`s unfortunate. But I think that
we need to stay on task. This is about getting justice and answers for
Mike Brown. So, we understand that there might be some bruised egos and
some reputations that have been, you know, maybe questioned based on some
of the changes that have been made in leadership for certain things. But
if it`s in the best interest of the community for transparency and
accountability, we want a third party to come in here for a prosecutor, to
look at this and we need to stay focus on Mike Brown and not worry about
anybody else`s ego or career or their reputation. This is about Mike
SHARPTON: Well, that`s what I would like to see -- a third party. I have
been saying that all along. Patricia Byrnes, Lisa Bloom, thank you both
for your time.
BYNES: Thank you.
BLOOM: Thank you.
SHARPTON: Ahead, how the community is responding today to all of today`s
events. "ALL IN" host Chris Hayes is live in Ferguson, next.
SHARPTON: Joining me now live from Ferguson is Chris Hayes who is hosting
his show live from there tonight. Thanks for being here, Chris.
CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST, "ALL IN WITH CHRIS HAYES": Thank you, Rev.
SHARPTON: The mood has changed dramatically in the last 24 hours. What
have you witnessed?
HAYES: Well, it was a really remarkable scene here last night. I mean,
you just talked to Captain Johnson. He`s been here, he`s working the
crowd. He was just being prayed over by a young woman. He`s been at the
front of the line of some of the marches yesterday. His officers were in
blue, highway patrol circulating. You don`t see many Ferguson police who
have a different shade of blue shirt. There are St. Louis County police
here. But it`s a different mood. I will say however this morning and
through the day after the release of those surveillance footages from the
Ferguson market, from the convenience store, there was real anger.
I mean, there was a real anger. There was a real kind of thickness in the
air. People just felt like that was exactly what they were fearing would
happen. It did happen. And I would say that now I think things feel a
little calmer here at the scene. It`s a little more subdued tonight than
it was last night. There are a lot of folks out. And I have to say this
is sort of a main location. But if you take a drive around Ferguson or
walk around Ferguson, there are people holding signs, putting their hands
up all over the place. There are small barbecues on the side of the
HAYES: So, people are still demanding justice, still very focused on what
SHARPTON: At this press conference this afternoon you asked about county
Prosecutor Bob Mcculloch criticizing the governor`s move to replace the
County Chief Belmar with Captain Johnson. Let me show that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Bob Mcculloch said last night that it was a denigration to your
officers, the decision about the governor to bring in the state highway
patrol. Do you agree with Bob Mcculloch?
CHIEF TOM JACKSON, FERGUSON POLICE DEPARTMENT: That`s political. And I`m
not going to get involved in that. What I will say is I know the officer
in charge. I have known him for years. And I have every confidence in
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: He kind of ducked the Mcculloch question. But what are you
getting around the community and what are you getting maybe off camera from
even some in law enforcement?
HAYES: So there is a big focus in the community right now on Bob
Mcculloch. And Bob Mcculloch is a very key figure in this. He hasn`t been
out in-front of the cameras very much. He hasn`t been making the
statements. You have seen the governor and you have seen the police chief.
And obviously you have seen our Ron Johnson. Bob Mcculloch is the man
ultimately overseeing the most important and germane investigation which is
the criminal investigation into the shooting of Mike Brown by Officer
Wilson. And he will be the person that decides if supreme charges, what
charges to bring, and if those charges were brought. And he will be the
So, it is quite significant to everyone here. And Bob Mcculloch, he`s been
here for 23 years as the county prosecutor. His reputation and his image
are well known whether folks like him or don`t like him. Everybody is very
focused on that and if people found it very significant than of all the
people last night who went out of their way to criticize the decision to
put Captain Johnson in charge, a decision I think that was widely seen
across the political spectrum, up and down the chain of command and here in
the community certainly as a smart decision. The one person to come out
and criticize that decision is the man in charge of the prosecution for the
shooting of Mike Brown. That has not been lost on the folks that I have
been talking to here.
SHARPTON: Well, that is really the point why a lot of people including me
have said that for the integrity of the process. We don`t know what will
come out. Have a third party. Have the federal government involved. And
I think that that`s exacerbated by Mcculloch almost singularly among those
around saying, no, this was bad, this was wrong. And he`s the guy that
would prosecute the case.
HAYES: There are, as far as I can tell, and you know, I may be missing it.
I can tell, there are two main entities that have criticized the decision
to remove Ferguson police and St. Louis County police from being in charge
at the security of this location. And those few people are County
Prosecutor Bob Mcculloch and the police union for St. Louis County which
put out a blistering statement just a little while ago. That`s it.
Now, keep in mind those are the folks conducting the investigation. You
can see photos of the crime scene or the scene of Mike Brown`s death in
which you see St. Louis County police officer walking around in the
aftermath of that. So, the St. Louis County police officer, their union
representation that is blasting that decision. It`s Bob Mcculloch. And
those are the key entities that are going to oversee the law enforcement
process that might lead to the ultimate charging and/or prosecution of the
officer in question.
SHARPTON: Well, you`re doing a great job down there. We`ll be watching
tonight. Your special coverage right from Ferguson.
HAYES: Thank you, Rev.
SHARPTON: 8:00 tonight right here on MSNBC. Chris Hayes, thank you for
your time. Be sure to watch it now, "ALL IN WITH CHRIS HAYES," he`s live
from Ferguson tonight at 8:00 p.m. Eastern.
Ahead, Michael Brown and the renewed focus on civil rights in America.
Martin Luther King III, is here and on that, ahead.
SHARPTON: Martin Luther King III, on Michael Brown and civil rights.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: I have a son that`s 27 who has dreads down to here.
And I have to talk to him every day. When you are stopped by the police,
you don`t say a word. You don`t move. We should not have to do that. We
are citizens of the United States of America.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: The Michael Brown tragedy has renewed the focus on police and
civil rights in our community.
Joining me now is Martin Luther King III. Thanks for being here.
MARTIN LUTHER KING III, PRESIDENT, KING CENTER: Thanks, Rev.
SHARPTON: Martin, do you think that the killing in Ferguson and its
aftermath are also part of a larger civil rights issue at the forefront of
the movement today?
KING: Well, I certainly think that when we look at this specific situation
and police brutality and misconduct that that`s still a major problem. And
I`m certainly grateful that you and I back I believe in 2000, we were
probably about to get racial profiling addressed when, in fact, in 2001,
9/11 occurred. And it sort to re-empowered the police presence.
KING: And so what we see -- what is so wonderful in one sense about what
we see in Ferguson is the concept of community policing is being enforced.
That`s something that needs to be unanimously embraced across our nation.
But human relations, sensitivity and diversity training is certainly in
SHARPTON: You know, to that point, the images out of Ferguson this week
bear a striking resemblance to the images we saw come out of the civil
rights movement in the `60s. Police lining up on the streets. Police
pointing guns at protesters. Even officers holding dogs. I mean, we have
come a long way. But there is still a long way to go, Martin. Right?
KING: Well, absolutely. And I think that the moment that our communities
come together. And, quite frankly, it`s not just our communities. It
really is creating what I would call is a strategic plan that infuses
capital as well technical training, giving people viable skills so that
they can, in fact, really assume their rightful places and become
responsible. But when you have communities where there is no opportunity,
that`s a remedy for disaster. And we see it over and over again. And the
fact that police in some communities do not know how to interact with other
SHARPTON: You know, one of the things that we have had to deal with is
also the frustration in our community that impatient and feel
disenfranchised while we deal with those in the law enforcement community
that sincerely don`t understand that frustration. I`m not talking about
people that are just entrenched and have maybe some biases based on
whatever. But they really don`t understand it. And kind of balancing the
two is a challenge.
KING: Well, it are really is. And of course, everybody`s experience is
different. They are individuals all over the world who understand what
they have seen that has taken place in Ferguson. But then there are other
individuals who may not understand because the experience has not been --
for example, we know that African-American mothers have to talk to their
children. Girls and boys, in terms of how they should interact with
police. I don`t believe that European Americans have to have those same
conversations. Because there is just a different treatment of how African-
American children and children of color in general are treated as opposed
to how European children are treated.
SHARPTON: Well, Martin Luther King III, thank you for being here tonight
and sharing with us. I will see you in Ferguson this weekend.
KING: Absolutely. Thank you, Rev.
SHARPTON: Thank you. Still ahead, remembering the young man at the heart
of this tragedy. Stay with us.
SHARPTON: It`s been a dramatic week of events. We must not forget what
started this turmoil. The killing of an unarmed 18-year-old young man.
SHARPTON: I`d like to close the show tonight by talking a little bit about
Michael Brown. This was the image of him released today by police. But
his family says that`s not the complete picture of this young man. Let`s
remember that Michael earned his high school diploma exactly two weeks ago
today. After working hard this summer to earn all his credits. His
teacher said he was always the first through the door in the morning. And
this past Monday, Michael was supposed to start classes at a vocational
college to learn the heating and cooling trade, a career for the future.
That future is now gone. And tonight we must remember and respect his
family`s grief. I talked to Michael`s mother on this show Monday night.
And you could see her heart was broken.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LESLEY MCSPADDEN, MOTHER OF MICHAEL BROWN: I should be celebrating. We
all should be celebrating my son`s graduation and going on to college. But
we`re planning a funeral. We called him Mike-Mike. Little Mike-Mike.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: He was her baby boy. Her little Mike-Mike. And how he`s gone.
Maybe if all of us got past just the political questions and whose side we
think we`re on and how we look at matters and looked at our children and
thought about what we would want to know and what we would insist on
having, if something happened wrong to our kids. Maybe we would think
differently about how we handle situations like this. Maybe we would seek
fairness and seek real answers and seek permanent change and solutions
rather than just picking sides. Because at the end, we need to be on the
side of what`s right for those children.
Thanks for watching. I`m Al Sharpton. Have a great weekend. "HARDBALL"
starts right now.
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