Ferguson Police Release 'Robbery' Video

But say shooting of Michael Brown was unrelated
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 15, 2014 3:35 PM CDT

Police in Ferguson, Mo., today released a video of Michael Brown allegedly robbing a convenience store on the day an officer shot him dead. But Police Chief Thomas Jackson said that officer Darren Wilson—who was responding to the convenience-store robbery—made "initial contact" with Brown apart from the robbery, CNN reports. Wilson approached Brown because he and others "were walking down the middle of the street blocking traffic," said Jackson. That jibes with an account by a friend of Brown's, who said the incident began when officers told Brown to walk on the sidewalk.

Police have said that Wilson and Brown struggled over the officer's weapon at the police cruiser window. Eyewitness Tiffany Mitchell agreed, but added that "it looked as if Michael was pushing off and the cop was trying to pull him in." Another eyewitness said the officer's gun went off, Brown ran away, and Wilson chased him on foot before shooting him. Brown's family, meanwhile, is "beyond outraged" by police releasing information about the robbery "in a manner intended to assassinate the character of their son," said the family's lawyer. But police say they found the stolen merchandise on Brown's body after shooting him, Reuters Live reports. See the police report, or why tensions eased last night in Ferguson. (More Michael Brown stories.)

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