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The Rolla Daily News - Rolla, MO
  • Federal autopsy ordered in Missouri teen's death

  • Attorney General Eric Holder on Sunday ordered a federal medical examiner to perform another autopsy on a black Missouri teenager whose fatal shooting by a white police officer has spurred a week of rancorous and sometimes-violent protests in suburban St. Louis.
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    • Key events following the death of Michael Brown

      FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) — A timeline of key events following the fatal police shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson, Missouri.

      AUG. 9 — Br...

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      Key events following the death of Michael Brown

      FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) — A timeline of key events following the fatal police shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson, Missouri.





      AUG. 9 — Brown and a companion are confronted by an officer as they walk back to Brown's home from a convenience store. Brown and the officer are involved in some kind of scuffle, followed by gunshots. Brown dies at the scene.



      AUG. 10 — After a candlelight vigil, people protesting Brown's death smash car windows and carry away armloads of looted goods from stores. In the first of several nights of violence, looters are seen making off with bags of food, toilet paper and alcohol. Some protesters stand atop police cars and taunt officers.



      AUG. 11 — The FBI opens an investigation into Brown's death, and two men who said they saw the shooting tell reporters that Brown had his hands raised when the officer approached with his weapon and fired repeatedly. That night, police in riot gear fire tear gas and rubber bullets to try to disperse a crowd.



      AUG. 12 — Ferguson Police Chief Tom Jackson cancels plans to release the name of the officer who shot Brown, citing death threats against the police department and City Hall. The Rev. Al Sharpton and President Barack Obama both plead for calm after two nights of clashes between police and protesters.



      AUG. 13 — Another night of violence wracks Ferguson, with some people lobbing Molotov cocktails and other objects at police, who respond with smoke bombs and tear gas. Two reporters are detained at a McDonald's. Images of the standoff, showing police using armored vehicles and pointing assault rifles at the crowds, are widely shared on social media.



      AUG. 14 — The Missouri Highway Patrol takes control of security in Ferguson, relieving local police of their law-enforcement authority after four days of violence. Within hours, the mood among protesters becomes lighter, even festive. The streets are filled with music, free food and even laughter.



      AUG. 15 — Police identify the officer who shot Brown as Darren Wilson, a 28-year-old man who had patrolled the St. Louis suburbs for six years. They also release a video purporting to show Brown robbing a convenience store of almost $50 worth of cigars shortly before he was killed. The video draws anger from protesters. After nightfall, officers and the crowds clash again. Some people in the crowd storm into the same convenience store that Brown was accused of robbing and loot it.



      AUG. 16 — Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon declares a state of emergency and imposes a curfew in Ferguson. The first night of the curfew ends with tear gas and seven arrests, after police in riot gear use armored vehicles to disperse defiant protesters who refused to leave.



      AUG. 17— Attorney General Eric Holder orders a federal medical examiner to perform another autopsy on Brown. The Justice Department cites the "extraordinary circumstances" surrounding the death and a request by Brown's family members.



  • Attorney General Eric Holder on Sunday ordered a federal medical examiner to perform another autopsy on a black Missouri teenager whose fatal shooting by a white police officer has spurred a week of rancorous and sometimes-violent protests in suburban St. Louis.
    The "extraordinary circumstances" surrounding the death of 18-year-old Michael Brown and a request by Brown's family members prompted the order, Department of Justice spokesman Brian Fallon said in a statement.
    "This independent examination will take place as soon as possible," Fallon said. "Even after it is complete, Justice Department officials still plan to take the state-performed autopsy into account in the course of their investigation."
    The Justice Department already had deepened its civil rights investigation into the shooting. A day earlier, officials said 40 FBI agents were going door-to-door gathering information in the Ferguson neighborhood where Brown, who was unarmed, was shot to death Aug. 9 in the street.
    A federally conducted autopsy "more closely focused on entry point of projectiles, defensive wounds and bruises" might help that investigation, said David Weinstein, a former federal prosecutor who supervised the criminal civil rights section of Miami's U.S. attorney's office. The move is "not that unusual," he added.
    Federal authorities also want to calm any public fears that no action will be taken on the case, Weinstein said.
    President Barack Obama, who has been getting regular updates on the situation in Ferguson while on vacation, was to be briefed by Holder upon returning Monday to the White House.
    The Justice Department's announcement followed the first night of a state-imposed curfew in Ferguson, which ended with tear gas and seven arrests after police dressed in riot gear used armored vehicles to disperse defiant protesters.
    Missouri State Highway Patrol Capt. Ron Johnson said protesters were not the reason for the police reaction early Sunday after the midnight curfew took effect. He cited a report of people who had broken into a barbecue restaurant and taken to the roof, and a man who flashed a handgun in the street as armored vehicles approached the protesters.
    At a Sunday rally, Johnson said he had met members of Brown's family and the experience "brought tears to my eyes and shame to my heart."
    "When this is over," he told the crowd, "I'm going to go in my son's room. My black son, who wears his pants sagging, who wears his hat cocked to the side, got tattoos on his arms, but that's my baby."
    Johnson added: "We all need to thank the Browns for Michael. Because Michael's going to make it better for our sons to be better black men."
    The Rev. Al Sharpton told the rally Brown's death was a "defining moment for this country."
    Page 2 of 2 - Sharpton said he wants Congress to stop programs that provide military-style weaponry to police departments. He said he expects police to "smear" the slain teenager, his family and his attorneys. He also condemned the recent violence and looting in Ferguson.
    As evening fell Sunday, the protests had a party-like atmosphere, with a parade of horn-honking cars rolling up and down a half-mile strip lined by many of the boarded-up shops looted nights earlier. Police were stationed incrementally along the street, merely watching.
    Some people were barbequing outside the burned-out QuikTrip convenience store that was destroyed earlier in the week.
    At one point, gunshots were heard on the street where Brown was shot, and a flood of people ran from the sound. It was not clear who fired the shots or why.
    The protests have been going on since Brown's death heightened racial tensions between the predominantly black community and the mostly white Ferguson Police Department, leading to several run-ins between police and protesters and prompting Missouri's governor to put the state highway patrol in charge of security.
    Ferguson police waited six days to publicly reveal the name of the officer and documents alleging Brown robbed a convenience store shortly before he was killed. Police Chief Thomas Jackson said the officer did not know Brown was a robbery suspect when he encountered him walking in the street with a friend.
    Gov. Jay Nixon, who imposed the curfew after declaring a state of emergency, said Sunday on ABC's "This Week" that he was not aware the police were going to release surveillance video from the store where Brown is alleged to have stolen a $49 box of cigars.
    "It's appeared to cast aspersions on a young man that was gunned down in the street. It made emotions raw," Nixon said.
    Police have said little about the encounter between Brown and the officer, except to say that it involved a scuffle in which the officer was injured and Brown was shot. Witnesses say the teenager had his hands in the air as the officer fired multiple rounds.
    "When you're exhausted, when you're out of resources, when you're out of ammunition, you surrender," Brown's uncle, pastor Charles Ewing, told worshippers during a Sunday sermon at Jennings Mason Temple in Ferguson. "He surrendered and yet he died."
    The officer who shot Brown has been identified as Darren Wilson, a six-year police veteran who had no previous complaints against him. Wilson has been on paid administrative leave since the shooting, and the department has refused to say anything about his whereabouts. Associated Press reporters have been unable to contact him at any addresses or phone numbers listed under that name in the St. Louis area.

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