Final Decision in Ferguson: Public Concern Didn't Sway Jury
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

Final Decision in Ferguson: Public Concern Didn't Sway Jury

Officer Darren Wilson not indicted by grand jury

Final Decision in Ferguson: Public Concern Didn't Sway Jury

After just over three months of deliberation, twelve members of a grand jury have come to a verdict in the Ferguson police case. On August 9, 18 year old Michael Brown was shot and killed by Officer Darren Wilson. Since then, riots and looting have plagued the city and the entire country has focused in on a tiny town in Missouri as the case has raised significant questions about race in 2014, police brutality, and the place social media and the 24-hour news cycle play in today's era of reporting. 

Tonight, St. Louis County Prosecutor Bob McCulloch delivered the news that Officer Darren Wilson would not be indicted on any of the five counts he was charged with, citing that the jury found no probable cause. Since this was decided by a grand jury, the recordings and transcripts could be released soon, as a St. Louis circuit court judge, Carolyn C. Whittington, has already agreed to do so. During his testimony, he recounted the story from beginning to end as well as discussing the grand jury's events over the past three months. Over 25 days, the jury of 12 randomly selected citizens, six white men, three white women, two black women and one black man, heard 60 witnesses give 70 hours of testimony. The five charges ranged from involuntary manslaughter to first degree murder. After two days of deliberation, they came to a conclusion.

While prosecutor McCulloch has not been without controversy himself - his father, a police officer, was shot and killed by a black man in the line of duty, he was able to deliver a nonpartisan testimony. During the press conference, he reminded us that the grand jurors are "the only people who have heard and examined every witness and every piece of evidence", and that "decisions in the criminal justice system must be determined by physical and scientific evidence and not in response to public outcry". He also blamed the role that the "insatiable appetite" of the media and social media played in this case. Noting examples of rumors that were wholly inconsistent with the autopsies, he reminded all of us that the justice system is there for a reason - to weed out the rumors, uninformed tweets, and spun-out stories to find the factual, physical evidence that ensures the guilty are punished and the innocent walk free. 

Regardless of how you feel about the decision tonight, there must be change. Police must be able to defend themselves when their lives feel threatened, but citizens must be able retaliate and not be at the mercy of an armed officer. Gun violence in America can no longer be ignored and we as a nation must do something to prevent another Ferguson.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
the beatles
Wikipedia Commons

For as long as I can remember, I have been listening to The Beatles. Every year, my mom would appropriately blast “Birthday” on anyone’s birthday. I knew all of the words to “Back In The U.S.S.R” by the time I was 5 (Even though I had no idea what or where the U.S.S.R was). I grew up with John, Paul, George, and Ringo instead Justin, JC, Joey, Chris and Lance (I had to google N*SYNC to remember their names). The highlight of my short life was Paul McCartney in concert twice. I’m not someone to “fangirl” but those days I fangirled hard. The music of The Beatles has gotten me through everything. Their songs have brought me more joy, peace, and comfort. I can listen to them in any situation and find what I need. Here are the best lyrics from The Beatles for every and any occasion.

Keep Reading...Show less
Being Invisible The Best Super Power

The best superpower ever? Being invisible of course. Imagine just being able to go from seen to unseen on a dime. Who wouldn't want to have the opportunity to be invisible? Superman and Batman have nothing on being invisible with their superhero abilities. Here are some things that you could do while being invisible, because being invisible can benefit your social life too.

Keep Reading...Show less

19 Lessons I'll Never Forget from Growing Up In a Small Town

There have been many lessons learned.

houses under green sky
Photo by Alev Takil on Unsplash

Small towns certainly have their pros and cons. Many people who grow up in small towns find themselves counting the days until they get to escape their roots and plant new ones in bigger, "better" places. And that's fine. I'd be lying if I said I hadn't thought those same thoughts before too. We all have, but they say it's important to remember where you came from. When I think about where I come from, I can't help having an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for my roots. Being from a small town has taught me so many important lessons that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Keep Reading...Show less
​a woman sitting at a table having a coffee

I can't say "thank you" enough to express how grateful I am for you coming into my life. You have made such a huge impact on my life. I would not be the person I am today without you and I know that you will keep inspiring me to become an even better version of myself.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

Waitlisted for a College Class? Here's What to Do!

Dealing with the inevitable realities of college life.

college students waiting in a long line in the hallway

Course registration at college can be a big hassle and is almost never talked about. Classes you want to take fill up before you get a chance to register. You might change your mind about a class you want to take and must struggle to find another class to fit in the same time period. You also have to make sure no classes clash by time. Like I said, it's a big hassle.

This semester, I was waitlisted for two classes. Most people in this situation, especially first years, freak out because they don't know what to do. Here is what you should do when this happens.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments