The family of an unarmed Missouri teen whose death at the hands of police called for calm Monday, saying their son wouldn’t have wanted the rioting and looting that followed — but they also called for justice, and their lawyer said the young man was “executed.”
“He wouldn’t have wanted none of that. We’re going to do it the right way. But we need justice for our son,” Michael Brown’s father, Michael Brown Sr., told reporters. Michael Brown, 18, was shot by police at noon Saturday in Ferguson, a predominantly black suburb of St. Louis.
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The Department of Justice and the FBI have launched an investigation into Brown’s death. Police Chief Jon Belmar said Brown was shot several times after a “physical confrontation” that involved the officer being pushed into his patrol car, followed by a struggle for his weapon. Witnesses told NBC affiliate KSDK that Brown had his hands in the air when he was shot. Attorney Benjamin Crump, representing the family, rejected the police's version of events and said Brown “was executed in broad daylight.”
Monday afternoon members of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People called for a fair and transparent investigation, and slammed the actions of looters. "To sneak around under the cover of darkness, to loot, to steal, to burn down your neighborhood, this does not require courage," the group's president, Cornell Brooks, told an overflow crowd at a church in St. Louis. "When you struggle for justice, that requires courage."
— Phil Helsel