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5 Years Later, Father of Michael Brown Issues a Plea

He wants investigation reopened into the fatal police shooting of his son
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Aug 9, 2019 3:40 PM CDT
A man who declined to be identified unfolds a metal chair Thursday in the middle of Canfield Drive at a rebuilt memorial to Michael Brown Jr., preparing to guard it through the night. "These are our streets,"...   (Robert Cohen/St. Louis Post-Dispatch via AP)
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(Newser) – On the fifth anniversary of Michael Brown's death in Ferguson, his father is urging the St. Louis County prosecutor to reopen the investigation into the fatal shooting of the black, unarmed 18-year-old by a white police officer, per the AP. Michael Brown Sr. spoke Friday outside the St. Louis County Justice Center. "Justice has not been served," said Brown, 41. "My son deserved to live a full life. But a coward with a badge ... chose not to value his life." Wesley Bell, the county's first black lead prosecutor, took office in January after defeating seven-term incumbent Bob McCulloch, who was criticized for his handling of the Aug. 9, 2014, shooting. Detractors accused him of guiding the grand jury to its decision not to indict Darren Wilson. The Department of Justice under Barack Obama also declined to charge Wilson, who resigned in November 2014.

In a statement to the AP, Bell would not say if the case will be reopened but said his office "is doing everything we can to understand the underlying issues that contributed to the tragic death of Michael Brown." Brown's mother, Lesley McSpadden, also has urged Bell to reopen the case. Brown and a friend were walking down the middle of Canfield Drive in 2014 when Wilson told them to move to the sidewalk. An exchange of words led to a fight inside Wilson's SUV. Brown got out and began to run, then turned around to face the officer. Wilson told investigators that he shot Brown in self-defense. The shooting led to weeks of protests. Bell would face no restrictions in re-examining Brown's death; Wilson was never charged.

(Read more Ferguson, Missouri stories.)

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