justice.gov

Just a day after the news broke that the Justice Department had found evidence of racist practices within the Ferguson, Mo., Police Department, the Department of Justice released a report claiming that, by its own estimation, Officer Darren Wilson was motivated by personal safety concerns when he shot and killed the unarmed teenager Michael Brown.

Or at least the department’s inquiry wasn’t able to produce evidence to refute Wilson’s account of the Aug. 9, 2014, shooting that started a cascade of protests around the country.

The Los Angeles Times brought word of the decision on Wednesday:

In an 86-page report released Wednesday, the Justice Department concluded that there was no evidence to refute Wilson’s claim that he fired because he feared for his safety after a confrontation with Michael Brown, 18, on Aug. 9.

The confrontation spawned demonstrations in Ferguson that sometimes became violent. It also led to the slogan “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot,” after some said that Brown was trying to surrender.

The Justice Department found that there were no reliable witnesses to substantiate that Brown had his hands raised when he was shot.

The ruling was not unexpected, but the #Ferguson Twittersphere registered a wide range of reactions and emotions following Wednesday’s announcement. Read the full text of the Justice Department’s report here.

–Posted by Kasia Anderson

Wait, before you go…

If you're reading this, you probably already know that non-profit, independent journalism is under threat worldwide. Independent news sites are overshadowed by larger heavily funded mainstream media that inundate us with hype and noise that barely scratch the surface.  We believe that our readers deserve to know the full story. Truthdig writers bravely dig beneath the headlines to give you thought-provoking, investigative reporting and analysis that tells you what’s really happening and who’s rolling up their sleeves to do something about it.

Like you, we believe a well-informed public that doesn’t have blind faith in the status quo can help change the world. Your contribution of as little as $5 monthly or $35 annually will make you a groundbreaking member and lays the foundation of our work.

Support Truthdig