ORIGINAL FRENCH ARTICLE: L’autopsie de Michael Brown embrase à nouveau Ferguson
Translated Monday 25 August 2014, by
The autopsy, done at the request of Michael Brown’s family, shows that the young man was shot six times, including twice in the head. At this news, and to prevent renewed rioting, the National Guard was deployed in the city.
The results of the autopsy show that the trajectory of the mortal bullet suggests that the victim was standing with his head in a downward position, a gesture of surrender, when the shot was fired, according to the family’s lawyer. Two bullets struck the young man in the head, one at the crown of the head and another which came out near the eye area. The other bullets hit four places in the right arm between the armpit and the hand. The mortal bullet was the one that struck the crown of the head, “while he was leaning forward.”
The medical examiner said no gunshot residue was found on 18-year-old Brown’s skin surface and there was “no sign” of a struggle, the small number of abrasions on the body being attributed to the fall onto the road.
For the lawyer, “given those kinds of facts, this officer should have been arrested.” This demand for justice was taken up by the many residents of Ferguson who again demonstrated in the night of August 17 to 18. The local police only announced that the police officer who killed the young man has been on administrative leave since the August 9 shooting.
The versions given by the police and by several witnesses are still contradictory and the police do not seem to be disposed to provide details. For the police, Michael Brown allegedly tried to seize the gun of the policeman, who then shot him. The policeman’s face was allegedly injured in the course of the struggle. But according to several witnesses, including the friend who was walking with Michael Brown, Brown had his hands in the air.
The conclusions of the autopsy are of a nature to greatly renew the tension. Another autopsy has been requested by the federal government, and will be conducted by “one of the most experienced medical examiners in the United States military.”
Moreover, Barack Obama has announced that Attorney General Eric Holder would go to Missouri on August 20 to investigate the affair. Obama also launched an appeal for calm.
“So to a community in Ferguson that is rightly hurting and looking for answers, let me call once again for us to seek some understanding rather than simply holler at each other. […] There’s no excuse for excessive force by police or any action that denies people the right to protest peacefully.”
He also warned the governor, who called out the National Guard, making the town of Ferguson look like a war zone. Sharpshooters were even posted on the roofs of shops. Obama insisted on the fact that recourse to soldiers should be “limited.” “I’ll be watching over the next several days to assess whether, in fact, it’s helping rather than hindering progress in Ferguson,” he warned.