All In With Chris Hayes, Friday, August 15th, 2014
Read the transcript from the Friday show
ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES
August 15, 2014
Guest: Anthony Gray, Francis Slay, Jay Root, Jelani Cobb, Umar Lee, Julia
Ioffe; Trymaine Lee; Etefia Umana; Jamilah Nasheed, Hazel Erby
CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST: Good evening from Ferguson, Missouri. I`m
And dawn broke on this city in a very different Ferguson today. After
days of turmoil following the shooting death of Michael Brown at the hands
of a police officer, last night, finally, a breakthrough. Once control was
transferred from the county police to the highway patrol yesterday, it was
a totally different scene on the streets of Ferguson, a scene we brought
you right here last night.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What you`re seeing right now, and I think this
needs to be clear to the rest of the world, it`s not even much a
celebration. This is release.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Aside from a handful of minor incidents, last night was
largely peaceful. And instead of camouflaged officers pointing heavy
weapons at protesters, you have uniformed cops actually leading a march and
later mingling with the crowd, hugging, conversations, and sometimes very
intense arguments between police officers and protesters. None of which
was possible 36 hours earlier, when they were in SWAT gear and gas masks.
But this morning, all that changed. It started with a press
conference by Ferguson police chief, Tom Jackson.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TOM JACKSON, FERGUSON POLICE CHIEF: What we`re making available today
are the dispatch records and the video footage of a robbery, a strong arm
robbery, with use of force that occurred at a local convenience mart. At
11:52, dispatch gave a description of a robbery suspect over the radio. A
different officer arrived at the store, where the strong arm robbery
A further description, more detail was given over the radio. At 12:01
p.m., our officer encountered Michael Brown on Canfield Drive. At 12:04, a
second officer arrived on the scene, immediately following the shooting.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: The Ferguson police released surveillance video, showing a man
who appears to be Michael Brown in the convenience store, and a police
report detailing not his shooting, but how he was suspected of stealing
cigars in a strong arm robbery.
They also released the name of the officer who shot Michael Brown,
Darren Wilson, age 28, a six-year veteran of the force -- a man whose name
had been taken out of public view by police for the first five or six days
after the shooting.
And almost instantaneously upon release of that video footage and
stills, there was a wave of backlash.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It`s going to be hard to accept and believe that
that was the reason why this policeman took this boy`s life.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`ve got a young man that`s 18 years old today,
he`s dead. What are we going to do about that? We have to do something.
There has to be some justice some way and there has to be in some way.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: One thing I can say and I`ll say it again, St.
Louis County needs to clean its house.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Well, lawyers for the family of Mike Brown released a
statement shortly thereafter, expressing their outrage at what they called
the character assassination of their son.
Quote, "There is nothing based on the facts that have been placed
before us that can justify the execution-style murder of their son by this
police officer, as he held his hands up, which is the universal sign of
surrender. The prolonged release of the officer`s name and the subsequent
alleged information regarding the robbery is the reason why the family and
the local community have such distrust for the local law enforcement
A press conference later today turned into more of a community meeting
as residents in the wake of this disclosure vented their frustration to
Governor Jay Nixon and Captain Ron Johnson, the highway patrol officer,
credited with reducing the tension on Ferguson streets.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: School`s about to start. And the thing about it
is these kids are under protest, they are mentally trapped with what`s
going on. And how do you expect kids to sit in the classroom and be normal
about what`s going on right now?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I`m the father of seven children. But I`m scared
to death, because they don`t know that they can trust the police to protect
them on their way.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Our son, our children, our brothers and husbands
and fathers and boyfriends have to go through this every day, dealing with
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: And what seemed like an acknowledgment of the change after
that information was released. I watched firsthand as police were brought
in to protect Ferguson market. It`s a convenience store where the alleged
robbery took place. The police chief got a question about it at a second
press conference today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You just put more citizens in trouble by releasing
that video that now they have to be protected, because their store and
their business has been placed in media. And you say you`re concerned
about our safety --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But it seems like you`re only concerned about your
JACKSON: I`m absolutely concerned about the safety of my community.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: But by far, the biggest bombshell of that press conference,
one that literally left fellow reporters with their jaws agape, was the
fact that the alleged robbery was not related to the shooting that killed
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JACKSON: This robbery does not relate to the initial contact between
the officer and Michael Brown.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did he know that he was a suspect in a case or did
he not know?
JACKSON: No, he didn`t. He was walking --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It had nothing to do with the stop?
JACKSON: It had nothing to do with the stop.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So then why release the video?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: At this point, at this point, why did he stop
JACKSON: Because they were walking down the middle of the street,
blocking traffic. That was it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Well, lawyers for Michael Brown`s family later shared the
family`s reaction to the information released today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANTHONY GRAY, BROWN FAMILY ATTORNEY: The family feels that that was
strategic. They think it was aimed at denigrating their son. It was a
character assassination attempt. He`s now inciting the community all over
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Joining me now is Anthony Gray, the man you saw there,
attorney for the family of Michael Brown.
Mr. Gray, do you believe the police chief Jackson when he says they
released that video because of media requests and FOIA requests for robbery
GRAY: That`s hard to believe, that that`s the sole reason for
releasing information that may have played a part, I`ll give him that. But
that was not the sole reason in the opinion of those that are watching
HAYES: What was your reaction when in the second press conference,
and I was there, when the police chief came out and said, you know, oh, no,
this had nothing to do with the robbery. No, the shooting had nothing to
do with the robbery. What was your reaction when you`re watching that?
GRAY: Well, I know other people were surprised, but I was not. I
have forewarning and foreknowledge that nothing that occurred before the
shooting was relative to the actual shooting itself. But I can imagine the
surprise and outrage by those that did hear it.
HAYES: Later on, police chief Jackson told our own Ron Allen, well,
now the story is that at some point in the struggle, he noticed the box of
cigars, and then realized he might be the suspect. That is after chief
Jackson had said, just a few hours ago, it had nothing to do whatsoever.
GRAY: Well, Chris, you`re seeing why you have all the frustration and
outrage and anger. You`re witnessing firsthand what is the trigger behind
all of that. And the more that they do things like this, put out
information that makes absolutely no sense at all, you`re going to continue
to have this kind of outcry.
HAYES: Do you -- do you think there is a campaign of character
assassination against Mike Brown? Do your clients feel that`s happening?
GRAY: My clients, without a doubt, feel that this is happening. I
think anybody that`s objective and that`s fair and that`s looking at this
with an open mind would draw that same conclusion.
HAYES: The man who is conducting the investigation on the local
level, the man who will ultimately decide to bring charges, if charges are
brought, and subsequently prosecute the case is the county prosecutor, a
guy by the name of Bob McCullough. Last night, he had very strong words,
blasting the governor for his decision to relieve Ferguson and St. Louis
County police of command of security of this area.
Do you have full confidence that that man, Bob McCullough, can bring
justice to the family of Mike Brown, that he can pursue an investigation
that is above board?
GRAY: Well, I can tell you this. Eventually, we will find out.
Personally, I don`t want to speak on that, but we will find out the proof
will eventually be in the pudding as to whether or not he can do a fair
prosecution or evaluate this case fairly. Right now, there`s no trust for
that at this particular time.
HAYES: There is no trust?
GRAY: There is no trust for that at this particular time.
HAYES: If I am not mistaken, the family -- the possession of the body
was given over to the family last night.
GRAY: That is true.
HAYES: Of young Mike Brown. My understanding is also that the family
has conducted another autopsy, independent of the autopsy conducted by
county officials? Is that correct?
GRAY: That is correct.
HAYES: Do you have the results of that autopsy?
GRAY: We have preliminary results, yes.
HAYES: How many times was Mike Brown shot?
GRAY: I can`t disclose that right now. I don`t have an official
preliminary report, and when we get that, we plan to disclose that in an
organized and official manner, by way of press conference or some other
means of communication.
HAYES: So, you will be making public at some point the details from
the independent autopsy, that the family of Mike Brown has commissioned.
GRAY: Yes, I will sit down with my partners, Mr. Ben Crump, Daryl
Parks, and we will sit down and discuss how best to disseminate that
information to those who are wondering and that are curious.
HAYES: Do you have concern about the integrity of witnesses, and I
say this because we`ve now seen three eyewitnesses, one of whom who have
spoke to me on this program, several others spoke in other programs, all of
those accounts broadly in line with each other. At the same time, if I
were a prosecutor who was worried about making a case, I would be quite
worried about my witnesses, my star witnesses talking to the media.
Do you have that concern?
GRAY: I do not have that concern at this point. And if Mr.
McCullough does have that concern, I think he should communicate that and
articulate his basis for that concern. And perhaps that can be addressed.
But personally, for myself, I don`t have a problem with it, because
like you just stated, the witness accounts are all virtually aligned in the
critical facts of what happened.
HAYES: How are Mike Brown`s family -- how is the family doing?
GRAY: You know, they never recovered. They have never had an
opportunity to recover. And now things are starting to escalate, and the
tensions are starting to get higher, after we had a shift in the
environment, the governor, I thought, did an excellent job and made an
excellent decision. Put Ron Johnson from the highway patrol over this
atmosphere, and he completely changed it overnight.
Now, I get a sense that we`re going back to the very few days after
this incident, because of some of these things that are happening right
HAYES: Are you anticipating, is the family anticipating or bracing
for a kind of barrage of leaks about Mike Brown?
GRAY: Oh, no doubt about it. We anticipate that will happen. The
family has made it clear from the very beginning that Mike Brown Jr. was
not a perfect kid. His father described him as a dad placing his foot on
his son`s neck to keep him straight.
The mother emphasized at the very beginning, I tried hard to get and
keep him focused and keep him going in school. As far as I`m concerned,
all of that stuff does not matter when you`re examining the final few
moments of his life. It does not matter.
HAYES: Yes. Anthony Gray, he`s attorney for the family of Michael
Brown, thank you, sir. Thank you for coming out here tonight.
GRAY: Thank you, no problem. Thank you.
HAYES: All right. Joining me now is the Democratic mayor of St.
Louis, Francis Slay.
Mayor Slay, I have to say, the images that are coming out of Ferguson,
Missouri, are coming out of Ferguson -- but, of course, there are a lot of
folks around the country and the world who are just thinking, this is St.
Louis. I`m seeing tear gas in St. Louis, I`m seeing police violence in St.
Louis, I`m seeing unrest in St. Louis.
As the mayor of St. Louis, what are you thinking as you watch all this
MAYOR FRANCIS SLAY (D), ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI: Well, this is a very
highly charged situation. And while this is not the city of St. Louis, it
is the suburbs of St. Louis and it has a huge impact on the entire region,
and that`s something I`m very, very cognizant of.
HAYES: What are you hoping to see happen here? It strikes me that in
the time I`ve been here reporting, there is a little bit of a municipal
"Game of Thrones" going on. Some really indeterminacy of what`s in charge
of what and a kind of arm wrestling match over who`s in charge of what.
Are you confident right now that the lines of authority are clear? The
investigation are being pursued in a maximally professional manner?
SLAY: I am confident of that. And I really supported and I joined
the governor and the county executive, county executive Charlie Dooley,
yesterday, to announce a change in approach the way this thing is being
handled on the law enforcement end. I think and I believe and the county
executive and governor as well believe that it was just over the top in
terms of the amount of police presence, the type of equipment, the
artillery that they brought with them, and the military style.
I believed and the governor and the county executive as well, that
this needed to be demilitarized in terms of its approach. This is a highly
charged situation. And what I`m concerned about is that, you know, first
of all, we can`t lose sight of the fact that an 18-year-old young man was
killed in Ferguson on Saturday.
That his family, that his friends and other relatives in the entire
community are grieving and in mourning. There`s a lot of, a lot of anger
out there, certainly a lot of people are upset and you can see that the
emotions are extremely high. And anything that`s done, first of all,
cannot take away from the fact that we have some grieving parents and a
grieving community and a young man that was killed.
And I was concerned that what I was seeing is the focus went from
thinking about that to this image of the police versus the community. That
was a very, very bad image.
So I think that the governor did the right thing. I supported him in
that effort. In fact, I`ve offered up in our police chief in the city of
St. Louis and Captain Ronnie Robertson as well, chief Dotson and Ronnie
Robinson are working -- I mean, Major Robinson, are working with the state
trooper, Ron Johnson, to help provide advice and support in the efforts.
SLAY: Yes? The --
HAYES: I was just going to say the --
SLAY: As far as the investigation is concerned --
HAYES: Yes, St. Louis county prosecutor, Bob McCullough, is, of
course, conducting the investigation. He last night -- last night he said
that essentially, that the decision by Jay Nixon to remove the command from
the local police was essentially denigrating Ferguson police. Do you agree
SLAY: Absolutely not. I disagree with them. I think his remarks
were out of order.
They were ill-timed, inappropriate, and certainly, I think he`s wrong
on that. This is a very difficult situation that I know our police
department has actually assessed and kind of went out and looked at what
was going on. And they felt, like I did, that this was being handled in an
over the top way, and a way that was really doing more to create more
reaction from the community rather than one that was more conciliatory and
one that was going to allow people to provide an outlet for their anger and
to protest peaceably.
The vast majority of people out there were peaceably protesting.
There were relatively few number of people who were committing violence.
And you have to distinguish between people that are protesting and people
that are committing violence. And that line wasn`t looked at. Here`s
what, you know, I said yesterday and this is something I believe, is this
is a highly charged situation. Again, we can`t lose sight of the fact that
an 18-year-old was killed and that the community is outraged by it. We
don`t know everything that happened, and you know, it`s going to be a long
time before we get all the facts, but we have to be sensitive to that.
We have to make sure that justice happens. We have to make sure that
the grieving are comforted, that the angry are heard or are allowed to
speak. And of course, we have to make sure that the innocent are
protected. And what we`re seeing happening through the way this was being
conducted, those things were not happening.
HAYES: St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay, thank you much, sir.
There is some breaking news to report tonight out of Texas. Governor
Rick Perry has been indicted by a grand jury. The details, plus much more
from Ferguson, ahead.
HAYES: Some big, breaking news to report out of Texas tonight.
Plus, much more coverage live from Ferguson. Stick around.
HAYES: We are back live in Ferguson, Missouri, where it has been a
roller coaster of a day. We`ll have much more of the situation unfolding
here tonight, including a few interviews I did earlier today.
But first, some breaking news out of Texas, where Governor Rick Perry
has been indicted for abuse of power. Perry is accused of trying to force
Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg from office after she was
convicted of drunk driving. The governor threatened to veto state funding
for the office of Lehmberg if Lehmberg did not resign.
When she refused, Perry did veto the funding, using a line item veto.
Lehmberg is a Democrat. If she had resigned, Perry would have
appointed her replacement.
Joining me now, Jay Root, a reporter for "The Texas Tribune."
And, Jay, this is a little complicated in terms of how the Travis
County district also runs an office of public integrity.
So, first, explain that to us.
JAY ROOT, TEXAS TRIBUNE: Well, look, they have a public integrity
unit. They get state funding. In their job -- in some other states, it`s
maybe the attorney general. But they`re basically the prosecutor for
public corruption cases. So, if a lawmaker gets caught stealing or
something like that, then it`s the Travis County district attorney`s office
through the Public Integrity Unit that handles that prosecution. And
that`s the funding that he vetoed.
HAYES: And that`s -- that is the office, if I`m not mistaken, that
was the office that prosecuted Tom DeLay under accusations that he was
essentially laundering money for campaigns.
HAYES: And so that office, Governor Rick Perry basically said in the
wake of the drunk driving plea, he basically said, I am zeroing out your
funding. I`m getting rid of the office that is in charge of essentially
finding, investigating, and prosecuting public corruption in the state of
Texas. He said, I`m getting rid of it.
ROOT: Yes, unless you resign, basically. It was sort of, you know,
if you don`t step down, basically, I`m going to take your funding, your
state funding away. They still had some funding, but this really was a
sort of a crippling deal to the agency. They had to get funding on the
But, yes, he carried through the on the threat, and according to the
prosecutor, today, the grand jury found that there were two crimes involved
-- a first-degree felony and a third-degree felony. These are very serious
charges. Obviously, he`s innocent until proven guilty, and his office is
vowing a vigorous defense and said he did nothing wrong.
HAYES: But these are -- let`s just be clear. As of now, he has been
criminally indicted on two felony charges. What are the charges? What is
the crime being alleged?
ROOT: One`s called abuse of official capacity and the other one is
coercion of a public servant. But it`s basically that he unduly pressured
her to step down. And you know, there are all kinds of reports that there
were deals that would be made, you`re talking about who might be appointed.
Again, we don`t know what the grand jury heard. We don`t know what
the case is going to say. But that there were, you know, talks about what
would happen if she stepped down and, you know, there was a big discussion
with her in her office, intermediaries, about this. Of course, she refused
to step down.
Really awful video of her in this drunk driving arrest, and so that
was a big controversy at the time. And, so, you know, that`s what Perry
was really after, was saying that she was really irresponsible and that she
had to go, or he was going to get rid of his funding.
HAYES: So, Perry`s people put out a statement, basically saying,
everything they did was lawful. They will vigorously defend the governor`s
lawful prerogative to, within the bounds of the state constitution, made in
accordance with veto authority afforded to every governor under the Texas
constitution. We will continue to aggressively defend the governor`s
lawful and constitutional action."
The theory of the case from a criminal perspective however that is was
a criminally unlawful action to essentially use the line item veto as means
of inducement of getting a public official to resign.
ROOT: Right. And they`re saying, we`re already hearing from
Republicans that they are trying to criminalize politics, that, you know,
the Travis County is sort of a liberal enclave and conservative Texas.
But, the bottom line is, this is a bad thing politically. Look, it`s
never good to get indicted. This comes at a time when Rick Perry was
really methodically coming back.
I mean, you know, he had that horrible oops moment in the 2012 race.
Well, this is arguably worse than, you know, an embarrassment. I mean,
this is a criminal indictment, as you said.
HAYES: Jay Root from "The Texas Tribune", thank you so much.
ROOT: Thank you.
HAYES: About a 50-minute drive outside of Ferguson, just a little
while from here, the reaction to everything you`re seeing around here, the
people with their hands up saying don`t shoot and the horns being honked
and the outrage and calls for justice and protests on the street. The
reaction to all of that that`s been happening here is very, very different.
We`re going to talk about that, next.
HAYES: Night is beginning to fall and a steady rain is coming down
now on this intersection of Florissant and Canfield Drive. This is just a
few blocks, of course, from where Mike Rogers was shot and killed by
Ferguson police, just a few days ago over the weekend.
I`m sorry, Mike Brown was killed by Ferguson police. And you can see,
folks are honking their horns. But as the train falls, it`s far fewer
people out on the streets tonight. For the second night in a row, we are
seeing a very, very limited police presence. There are police officers
from the state highway patrol and from the Ferguson police, who are mixing
and talking to folks.
But as of yet, nothing like the very militarized response we saw two
nights ago that provoked such outrage here, across the country and across
Now, earlier today, I had the opportunity to talk with a local cab
driver who is an absolute character. He`s third generation north county
St. Louis. His name is Umar Lee, a convert to Islam, he told me. He has a
big bushy beard. And he has an almost encyclopedic understanding of how
this area, all of north county, which includes changed and how important
and central that was to what is happening right now.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UMAR LEE, FERGUSON CAB DRIVER: The historic migration pattern within
north county was mostly farmland, Ferguson`s a railroad town, some other
small towns in north county. I think that 1950s housing boom, and then you
get desegregation in the city. And so, white flight out of white north St.
Louis to north county. And then decades later, you get African-Americans
moving in to north county.
HAYES: So, this area was started as a place that a lot of whites,
people from St. Louis were moving to after school.
LEE: Right. There was a small city of Ferguson associated with the
railroad, but what made Ferguson and Florissant and these surrounding
communities grow was that flight out of North St. Louis. Now, there are
two historical black communities, Kinloch and Robertson, in north county,
but the rest is historically white.
HAYES: You have seen a time in your lifetime over North County, it
changed a lot demographically.
LEE: North County has changed dramatically. We have had a dramatic
white flight from North St. Louis Count out to St. Charles, even Lincoln
and Warren Counties. And, the African-American population in North County
is much larger.
HAYES: So, you got the situation -- you got a place that is sort of
in a period of demographic transition.
HAYES: And, if you look at other places, the politics of that can be
fraught on both ends.
HAYES: But, we have been focusing on the grievances of the
protesters, African-American community here in Ferguson, but, you know, the
white residents of Ferguson, who by and large are not down at the QT --
HAYES: -- I am getting the sense from folks I am talking -- they have
a very different perception of this.
LEE: Yes, there is a different perception of this. You know,
ironically, this is happening in Ferguson, because Ferguson has the
reputation of being one of the most progressive places in North St. Louis
County. We do have a strong contingent of white progressives that are kind
of committed to diversity, and have -- you know, like we got the Ferguson
Farmer`s market down the street and kind of re-invested --
HAYES: A farmer`s market town.
LEE: Farmer`s market, craft brew, you know? You know, like low-grade
hipsters kind of thing. You know what I am saying? But, you know, this
did happen in Ferguson -- And, what happened in North County really is,
you have an older white population, that is established. They got the city
jobs. They vote and then you have a younger African-American population,
not as established, oftentimes not voting in the same numbers. So the
Ferguson-Florissant School District is something like, which I went to
Ferguson-Florissant School is something like 80 percent African-American.
But the school board is 100 percent white.
HAYES: To this day?
LEE: To this day, yes. And, they just fired earlier this year, Dr.
Art McCoy, a popular black superintendent, where Michael Brown was killed
is in the Ferguson-Florissant School District.
HAYES: So, you got this along a lot of lines from county executive to
the police force to the school superintendent. You have got this sort of,
you know, beneath the surface, the subtext of this kind of push and pull,
between these different demographic groups, in a period of transition for
who is running the institution.
LEE: Right. It is community wide. It is churches. You know, you
have older churches, which were white churches, which are now becoming
African-American churches or -- it is just community wide.
HAYES: What do you think -- you were just telling me, you were
getting an earful from a couple of residents about the protesters. It is a
very different view than maybe what the protesters themselves think of what
is going on.
LEE: It is a very different view. I think -- and of course, the
white community of Ferguson is not monolithic, but I think we have strong
contingent of them who feel that the protesters are unjust, circle the
wagons, they feel Ferguson has been vilified in the national media,
internationally. And, these are people who generally would have a pro-
police mentality, anyway. And, they are very upset by what is going on
HAYES: And, the politics of this region, not just in Ferguson, not
just in North County, but the whole metro area is pro-police law and order,
that is a staple of the politics of the region.
LEE: Yes. You understand North County was one of those blue-collar
democrat strong union places, which, you know, growing up, most of the
white kids I knew, including my own, were military families, were union
HAYES: Pro-life, pro-labor democrat.
LEE: Right. VFW, the whole nine yards. That is kind of the culture
here in North St. Louis County. As a matter of fact, I was walking past
quick trip yesterday, and as an African-American family, their backyard
kind of goes into where the street, and I said, "Hey, you had a front row
view." And, they both shook their heads, like, unfortunately.
HAYES: All right, Umar, you got to get back in your cab.
LEE: All right, man. Thanks man.
HAYES: Thanks for taking your time. Joining me now, Julia Ioffe,
Senior Editor for "The New Republic," who just wrote a piece about the
reaction of communities outside Ferguson in North County, everything that
has been happening here this week.
And Trymaine Lee, National Reporter for msnbc.com, who has been down
here all week. Julia, I thought your piece was fantastic. You just drove
15 minutes from here. You talked to some folks at a Starbucks, basically
like, "Hey, what is up? What do you think of what is going on?" And, what
did you hear?
JULIA IOFFE, SENIOR EDITOR FOR "THE NEW REPUBLIC": I mean it really
did not take much questioning to get them to tell me everything they
thought about the situation. I just asked them what they thought and out
came this resentment and showed how much of a divide there was among -- in
St. Louis, and what a divided and segregated city it was.
This was a very white enclave and they were resentful. They said
that, you know, how come everybody is paying so much attention to this.
Because when they kill each other, as they said, nobody talks about it.
And, black people hate white people. And this is why --
HAYES: This was all told to you within a few minutes of just --
IOFFE: Like that. Or, I wish the cameras and the journalists like
you would go away, because you are just giving these people attention.
They just want to see themselves on T.V. And, really, this is all an
excuse for them to go looting for junk. Yes, that was my reaction.
HAYES: I also heard -- I also read in a piece, you know, that, oh, he
struggled with the cops, or he was fighting back against the cops.
IOFFE: No -- Or that he was not innocent and he had a rap sheet.
HAYES: Yes, rap sheet, that is the big thing.
IOFFE: Yes, which is not true.
HAYES: Which of course -- which is not true.
HAYES: And, of course, Trymaine, it is precisely that, right? That
would drove people just here out of their minds today, when they released
that surveillance footage because it was like, "Here we go again."
TRYMAINE LEE, MSNBC.COM NATIONAL REPORTER: Right.
HAYES: And, here is the message to the folks here who want to engage
in backlash politics about all of this, that this kid, quote, "was who you
thought he was."
LEE: Right. And, think about this, as soon as the admission came
out, people immediately saw it and started calling out for what they think
it was, a smoke screen. People were angered and for a moment, seeing that
it was going to kind of disrupt all of the peace that we have seen, the
night before, people were so angry that we had to be concerned. What is
going to happen now?
But, again, that sentiment is exactly why the people feel they have
been cloistered into this community. Abuses by the police, feeling they
have not been treated fairly. The whole city council is white, but for one
black person. There are 53 people on the police force and only three black
people. And, so that sentiment that we are getting and then add that to
the motivation that we saw a few nights ago, it all kind of come together -
HAYES: And the point, Julia, from your piece to me is the reason the
pressures are the way they are, the reason North County looks the way it
does is because there are a lot of voters in North County electing the
county prosecutor and county executives and local officials, who have those
IOFFE: Right, who see them as these people over there that were kind
of resent and were kind of afraid of. So, even when I told them -- you
know, they were like, "OH, my God, you are going over there? You got to be
careful." I said, "The protest is very peaceful right now. It is like a
And, one gentleman told me that he would go there, even though he has
tenants here. He rents properties here to a bunch of African-American
people. He said he does not want to go here, because he has a wife and
three kids, and if something would happen to him, it would be very bad.
So, these people are dangerous. They are violent. We do not know them --
HAYES: Let me briefly step in for the defense of the white people of
North County of St. Louis, which is that, you know, like Umar Lee told me,
it is not a model within the population at all and there are all sorts of
folks. I talked to a guy today on the street who is ran up to me and
proclaimed himself a socialist and talking about how much he was happy to
see what was going on with the protest.
IOFFE: Of course.
HAYES: So, obviously, massively monolithic. Lots of different views
and diversity of opinion across democratic lines. That said, there is a
core of classic politics of white racial backlash politics. I mean, North
County was a place that was produced by the desegregation of the St. Louis
Desegregation, which I should note, Jay Nixon sued to undue, as one of
the acts that put him on the map as a politician when he was running for
attorney general back in the late 1980s and 1990s.
LEE: Yes. And, the fear always is that we know that there are broad
spectrum of people and how they feel about race and a number of other
things. But, what happens when that police officer holds certain views
about you or your politician holds certain views, folks in this community,
it is not very different than a lot of other communities. White flight,
everyone fled. You want the schools, you got them. You want the public
institutions, you got them.
HAYES: And, That is why there is a sort of specific kind of feeling
happening. I have seen in other cities in Chicago and the south suburbs,
where the places that were the destination of white flight become the
places that black folks looking to buy a home and get better schools move
to and you get this sort of very interesting racial dynamic. Julia Ioffe
of New Republic, Trymaine Lee from msnbc.com. Thank you, both. Night is
falling and rain is falling here on Ferguson, Missouri. We will be right
HAYES: Night is falling here in Ferguson, Missouri. The rain is
falling too. There is a relatively light police presence, as folks drive
down the main thoroughfare here, just a few blocks from where the shooting
took place and honk their horns and lean out and put their hands up and
say, "Hands up! Do not shoot."
Earlier today, just outside the Ferguson Market, just a few blocks
from here, I was preparing to interview journalism student from Ferguson,
Etefia Umana and at that point, a string of police officers began filing
into the area to position themselves in front of the Ferguson Market. Keep
in mind, this was the subsequent of police releasing video that showed
Michael Brown as an alleged robbery suspect there.
This appeared to be a security detail specifically for the Ferguson
Market, and concerns about it being attacked following the release of that
information. The beginning of my interview began there, but as you will
see, we then decided to go elsewhere.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: We were about to set up this shot and I was talking to Etefia,
and I was saying, you are a journalism student, right?
ETEFIA UMANA, FERGUSON JOURNALISM STUDENT: Yes.
HAYES: And, you are studying journalism --
HAYES: -- And, how we kind of make the messages that people get, and
you are from here? You are from Ferguson and I said, "Well, we got to do
the shot in front of the Ferguson Market & Liquor, that is the iconic
place. And, what did you say to me?
UMANA: I just find it really weird how this story is being framed. I
feel like it is being a little sensationalized, because this street does
not represent like this entire community and if you go like a couple of
blocks away from here, you hear nothing but cicadas, dogs, and maybe even
if you listen closely, like the sizzle of barbecue.
HAYES: All l right, so we drove two minutes.
UMANA: If that --
HAYES: Maybe a minute, as we came through. We heard the sound of
cicadas, and now we have got the sizzle of barbecue, which is what you told
me you would have. And, I should note that we are not just 50 feet from
the site where Mike Brown was shot and killed. Right there, that memorial
commemorates where he lost his life at the hands of Ferguson police office,
whose name we now learned today.
So, Etefia. So, what is your reaction today? Last night, you and I
spoke and it seems like there has been this sort of crescendo and then this
change of leadership and Ron Johnson came in and last night was this really
remarkable scene. Today, after that video was released, I think a lot of
them -- a very angry statement by Mike Brown`s family and attorney. How do
you think people are feeling today?
UMANA: The idea that a young black man being killed by an officer and
then consequently vilified, later, whether it be through character and
photo shoots, like, if they gun me down, a toxicology report is anything
new. People are frustrated by it, because they feel like the same thing is
going to happen again, where he gets acquitted.
And, it is just like -- it is frustrating to be quite honest, because
like at the end of the day, an unarmed 18-year-old male was shot and killed
right there. It is unfortunate that it is trying to be tarnished by this
new footage, and now they are starting to get a little bit militarized
again, the police at the Ferguson Market as we saw today. So, it is kind
of like a resurgence of that same sort of atmosphere in the area. And, it
is really unfortunate to see that.
HAYES: Yes. You could feel it today, a little bit of resurgence of
that tension. All right, man. Thanks a lot.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: We learned something today about how the Ferguson Police go
about doing their business on a daily basis. It is really troubling and
the details ahead.
HAYES: A man beaten so severely by police. He bleeds and bleeds on
the uniform of those police officers, who then book him for damaging
property. More on that ahead.
HAYES: Protesters marching down the main thoroughfare here. The site
of protests, you can see them there. Chanting, drumming, hands up, do not
shoot. Hands up, do not shoot. That, of course, reaction to the
description three -- now three, eyewitnesses have given about the status of
Mike Brown when he was gunned down by a Ferguson police officer with his
Now, a local report from our NBC affiliate in St. Louis tonight,
highlighting an interesting protocol for how Ferguson Police Department
used to write up reports dealing with non-fatal uses of force.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE SPEAKER: The officer himself could complete it
and give it to the supervisor for his approval. Documents revealed those
reports were never placed in an officer`s personnel file.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE SPEAKER: How do we know that these officers have
not used excessive force over and over again? You know, that they have not
shot people or tased people or kicked people or, you know, injured other
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: In other words, there seems to be very little accountability
in place with the Ferguson Police Department for uses of force that were
not fatal. An interesting piece of information, considering, as the Daily
Beast reporter, Michael Daly points out, the officer accused of killing
Michael Brown, Darren Wilson, who is said to have no disciplinary record,
as such records are kept in Ferguson.
Wilson started out at a time when it was accepted for a Ferguson cop
to charge somebody for property damage for bleeding on his uniform. The
officer is responsible for deciding whether to pursue criminal charges in
this case is a St. Louis County prosecutor`s office.
If the Ferguson police are collecting the evidence and building the
case, it is a St. Louis County prosecutor, the man in charge of that
office is Bob McCulloch. And, he is the one currently conducting the
investigation that will determine whether Darren Wilson, the officer who
shot and killed Mike Brown will be charged and if charged with what will
prosecute the case.
And, a dispatch from Reuters this week reflects another time McCulloch
was in the spotlight. Quote, "In 2001, he was criticized heavily but stood
behind comments that two men fatally shot by a police officer and federal
drug agent were bums who were killed during an attempted arrest." And,
just yesterday, he had harsh words for Governor Jay Nixon.
Not too long after the governor decided to replace St. Louis county
police and put the Missouri highway patrol in charge of security in
Ferguson. A "St. Louis post-dispatch" quoted, McCullough as saying, the
governor had no legal authority to do that and to denigrate the men and
women of the county police department is shameful.
And, for Nixon, they never talked to commanders in the field and come
here to take this action is disgraceful. And, now, on top of all, there
are some calls here in Ferguson from elected officials from McCulloch to
recuse himself, because they do not have confidence he can impartially
prosecute this case. A state Senator who is calling for Bob McCulloch to
recuse himself will join me next right here to make that case. So stay
HAYES: We are back and joining me now, Missouri Democratic State
Senator Jamilah Nasheed; Democratic Councilwoman, Hazel Erby, from the St.
Louis County Council, and Jelani Cobb, my friend, Associate Professor of
History, Director of the Institute for African-American Studies at the
University of Connecticut.
Now, State Senator, you and I had a conversation when we got off the
air last night, where you came to me and you wanted to talk about St. Louis
County prosecutor Bob McCulloch. You were calling for him to recuse
JAMILAH NASHEED, (D) MISSOURI SENATOR: Absolutely. I think that Bob
McCulloch needs to show statesmanship and recuse himself from this process.
He needs to step away, because the people here and the St. Louis area, we
do not have confidence that he is going to be fair and --
HAYES: Would not he tell you, "I have been elected time after time
after time. I have been the county prosecutor for going on 23 years, I
believe. How can you say -- the voters have confidence in me. They put me
back in office."
NASHEED: But, he will not be fair on this particular --
HAYES: Why? Why do you say that?
NASHEED: Because we have had a situation that occurred years ago
where two men were shot 20 times at the jack in the box. The department of
justice came in and they said that those guys lied during their interview.
And, guess what Bob McCulloch did? Bob McCulloch allowed for those men --
the police officers to go free.
HAYES: You are saying the department of justice came in and said the
police officers lied about the shooting and Bob McCulloch let them go.
NASHEED: Absolutely. He ruled that it was a justifiable homicide.
If we want the people in this city to really have confidence in fact
process, he must step aside immediately.
HAYES: All right. Councilwoman Erby, do you feel the same way?
HAZEL ERBY, (D) ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI, COUNCILWOMAN: Yes, I do.
HAYES: You do?
ERBY: I do.
HAYES: Do you think that is a widely held view among politicians at
the county level?
ERBY: It is definitely a widely held view, the politicians as well as
the community. Bob McCulloch has a track record of not being fair. And, I
believe this will not benefit the family of Michael Brown. He will not be
fair. He needs to be removed from there.
HAYES: We have reached out to Prosecutor McCulloch, who I would love
to interview and talk to. I think if he were standing right here, he would
say, "You know, I call them as I see them. I am a longtime prosecutor. A
very adept prosecutor, very experienced prosecutor. I have put a lot of
people away in prison when they deserved it. You know, why should not I
have this case?"
ERBY: Because, like the Senator Nasheed said, the jack in the box
case, and there are others. There are others that we could cite. We know
that he will not be -- it is just not the best interest.
HAYES: In the comments last night, after you had this whole day in
which, you know, there was basic unanimity of applause for the decision to
change the security situation out here, put in Ron Johnson. And at the end
of the night -- basically, there were two entities, so far, as I can tell
that have dissented from that. There is the prosecutor Bob McCulloch and
there is the police union for the St. Louis county police. Now, St. Louis
County Police are also the entity that are collecting evidence after the
scene that are part of this investigation. What does that tell you about
ERBY: That tells you that it is already messed up. They have already
messed up the investigation. And, I believe, from what I understood, the
police, who committed the crime, and it was a crime, left the scene. Did
he leave the scene in the car where it happened? That was tampering with
evidence. So, it is already messed up. We need an impartial person to
come in and do this.
HAYES: Jelani, what do you make of the performance of the Ferguson
Police Department today, which was just head snapping?
JELANI COBB, DIRECTOR OF THE INSTITUTE FOR AFRICAN-AMERICAN STUDIES AT
THE UNIVERSITY OF CONNECTICUT: I think it is (inaudible) trance compounded
by ineptitude. The department started out stonewalling, moved to mud-
slinging and is now counterpunching.
HAYES: So, you do not buy that Chief Jackson came out today at the
press conference I was at, and he said, "Look, you guys were asking for
this video, you know, what do you want me to do?"
COBB: So, the initial question was, if he released the video, this
video was released in conjunction with the officer`s name, it raised the
suspicion of whereby why was this not released before? Because if, indeed,
he was responding to a robbery charge, that seems reasonable. People would
say, you seem someone who fits the description that closely, you would say,
"Well, let me talk to you for a minute and you would have a reason to pull
But, they did not say that, initially. So, it seems that the
suspicion, I saw a sign here that said, the Ferguson County -- the Ferguson
police need better script writers. And, I think that really sums up a lot
of how people see what has happened here. There is no consistency and the
story changes a lot.
HAYES: The shock among journalists local, national, everyone, when
Keith Jackson came out and said, "No. No. No. No. It had nothing to do
with each other." Everyone was like, "Wait. We were just here a few hours
ago when you release it together." State Senator Jamilah Nasheed,
Councilwoman Hazel Erby and Jelani Cobb, thank you all very much. I really
COBB: Thank you.
NASHEED: Thank you for having me.
ERBY: Thank you.
HAYES: All right, that is "All In" for this evening. Live from
Ferguson, Missouri, as night falls here. "Rachel Maddow Show" starts right
now. Good evening, Rachel.
RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC HOST: Good evening, Chris. Amazing stuff. Get
an umbrella, but amazing stuff, man. Well don.
HAYES: Thank you very much. Thanks.
MADDOW: Thanks and thanks to you at home.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY
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