St. Louis County police on Tuesday night said that an autopsy confirmed that Michael Brown died of gunshot wounds he suffered when he was shot by a police officer in Ferguson, Mo., Saturday — but refused to say how many times the unarmed 18-year-old was shot.
St. Louis County police wouldn’t release any other details of the autopsy, saying they would wait until toxicology tests were returned, and on Tuesday Ferguson police refused to name the officer involved in the shooting, citing threats made on social media.
Michael Brown’s death has sparked days of protests that have roiled the St. Louis suburb, and which on Sunday devolved into riots and looting. On Monday, police used tear gas and shot “beanbag rounds” at crowds.
Police say Brown was shot after a “physical altercation” with an officer that allegedly involved the cop being shoved into his patrol car and a struggle for his weapon. Brown’s family rejects that account, and a witness said Brown held up his arms and yelled, “I don’t have a gun,” before he was shot. The FBI has launched an investigation into the incident, and President Barack Obama on Tuesday offered his condolences to Brown’s family and called for calm.
— Phil Helsel
First published August 12 2014, 4:32 PM