St.Louis Prosecuting Attorney Bob McCulloch is subverting justice in Michael Brown case

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Good morning:

I write today to clarify the role of the prosecutor and grand jury in the Michael Brown murder investigation.

State grand juries have jurisdiction to investigate and charge people with state crimes committed within the county in which they are located. State or county prosecutors submit cases to them for consideration. Grand juries can also initiate their own investigations by subpoenaing witnesses, but they rarely do that.

Federal grand juries work the same way, but they deal with with federal crimes committed within the federal district in which they are located.

Jurisdiction to charge and prosecute drug offenses overlaps because both state and federal statutes have criminalized drug crimes. To avoid doubling up, the feds handle the more serious drug cases and the states handle the less serious ones. By seriousness, I am referring to the amount of drugs involved.

Jurisdiction rarely overlaps in murder cases because jurisdiction in murder cases depends on where the crime was committed. For example, the State of Missouri has jurisdiction to prosecute Darren Wilson for killing Michael Brown, but the feds do not since the shooting did not happen on federal property, such as a military base. But they would have jurisdiction to indict him for committing a hate crime or violating Michael Brown’s civil rights, since they have jurisdiction to charge those crimes wherever they are committed.

Federal prosecutors in the Central District of Florida, which is where George Zimmerman shot and killed an unarmed Trayvon Martin, apparently have decided not to seek an indictment charging Zimmerman with a hate crime or a civil rights violation.

A St.Louis County grand jury has jurisdiction to indict Darren Wilson because the shooting happened within that county.

There is no statute of limitations in murder cases. Therefore, if the grand jury’s term expires before it decides whether to indict Darren Wilson, a new grand jury can be convened to continue the investigation.

As I see it, St. Louis County Prosecutor Bob McCulloch does not want to prosecute Darren Wilson for murdering Michael Brown, so he is deliberately dragging his feet to prevent the grand jury from indicting him.

I have reached that conclusion because I can think of no valid reason why Wilson has not been indicted. Approximately ten witnesses who do not know Brown, Wilson or each other have all described Wilson shooting Brown after Brown stopped running away, turned and raised his hands. No one described Brown bull-rushing Wilson, although one witness described Brown stumbling toward Wilson after being shot and dropping to the ground.

His body was 95 feet away from Wilson’s vehicle.

A grand jury need only find probable cause (i.e., reasonable grounds) to believe Wilson murdered Brown in order to indict Wilson.

Wilson should have been indicted weeks ago because there is far more evidence against him than is necessary to establish probable cause.

Our legal system is designed to have trials in cases like this so that the community can witness the legal process proceed toward a just result as we just witnessed in the Theodore Wafer and Michael Dunn cases.

Bob McCulloch is attempting to subvert that process and by doing so he is subverting justice.

The good people of Ferguson know what he is doing and they are expressing their dismay peacefully by public protest.

That could change, if he continues to subvert justice.

For more information on the role of grand juries, click on “grand jury” in the index of categories that appears in column on the right side of the web page.

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55 Responses to St.Louis Prosecuting Attorney Bob McCulloch is subverting justice in Michael Brown case

    • You are absolutely right. Regardless of color, we must teach our children and grandchildren that they cannot trust the police and they should never assume they are safe in their presence.

      For example, if they are asked to produce ID and the ID is in a pocket or in the console of their vehicle, they should tell the cop and ask permission to produce it. Failure to abide by this rule could cost them their life.

      It should go without saying that, if they are stopped by police and questioned, they should assert their right to remain silent and refuse to answer any questions. They should remain polite and respectful throughout while asking if they are free to leave.

    • girlp says:

      Why did the police take the word of a meth addict, they did not investigate to see if meth head was telling the truth; the police just busted this man’s door down then lied about the confrontation. Shot him down in cold blood. Their should be no war on drugs the mindset of law enforcement is that they are at war with the public we are all in danger. Decrimilization and drug treatment is the best way to control drug abuse.

      • I have written about Portugal’s solution and periodically checked to see how they are doing. A hell of a lot better than we are, that’s for sure.

        Of course, there is a lot of money to be made selectively enforcing laws, disenfranchising people, destroying lives and enslaving minorities in the name of winning a phony war on drugs.

  1. MDX says:

    Although I agree that their is a medical malpractice issue, if it was me, I would let it go because how is that child going to feel when she finds out that she was a “mistake” that her parents sued for damages about?

    I hope they see the bigger picture before it is too late.

    • SearchingMind says:

      Would it make if they wanted a white girl but instead got a white boy; a blond boy but instead got a brunet; a highly intelligent white baby but instead got a white baby with Down Syndrome? I guess what I am getting at is what really constitutes medical malpractice? How does a fully fledged healthy human being constitute medical malpractice?

      • MDX says:

        That is an excellent argument that leaves me only with arguing that the mistake is that the sperm donor was not exactly what they specified.

        The malpractice argument is morally weak in that they are complaining that a perfectly healthy child is “damaged” due to skin tone, although, as you point out, there was a significant chance of a less desirable outcome, even if the donor had the “right” skin tone, eye color, and hair color.

        Genetics is a table of outcomes wherein how the one sperm out of many in the donation combines with the egg is the dice roll.

        So, even if not getting the right sperm donor is malpractice, then we must determine the cost of the damage,

        In the eyes of a racist, it would be large and, in the eyes of a loving human, being nothing at all.

        So two Lesbian, themselves subject to being the “other”, want to sue for damages because a healthy child is another “other”.

        That’s the big picture.

        • SearchingMind says:

          They might have more chance if they sued for breach of contract instead of “medical malpractice”.

          For there to be a medical malpractice, they will have to demonstrate
          a. That the baby is defect;
          b. That they suffered injury;
          c. That the injury was caused by the defect and
          d. That the damage was reasonably foreseeable

          Regardless of the merits of their case (of which there is little to none), one would argue that the only ones in this whole saga who are defect are the parents, relatives and friends of those lesbian parents who are inflicting serious emotional damage on a child through their own racist actions and inaction. It is interesting that these folks apparently have no problems with (lesbian couples) (raising a child), but instead with a child who knows no difference between peoples and races, who doesn’t have a clue as to what is going on!

          It is equally interesting, as you noted, that those les-bi-an “parents” think that their own child is defect/not adequate because the child is “Black”. And they are les-bi-ans – as in “g-a-y”?! Gee. We should say no more before we get ourselves into trouble.

          • Breach of contract requires a contract and a contract has to have terms and or conditions that are enforceable in a court of law or equity.

            I do not see any court ruling in their favor on the ground that they did not get the child they wanted, but I can envision a judge removing the child from the home because it would be in his best interests to remove him from his racist parents.

  2. bettykath says:

    Excellent example of white privilege.

    What happens, exactly, when a white family that wants a white sperm donor gets a half-black child instead?

    In the case of a lesbian couple from Ohio, it means a “wrongful birth” lawsuit against the sperm bank — two years after the fact. The lawsuit has apparently been prompted by the “racial problems” the parents are experiencing now that their child, 2-year-old Payton, is inching closer toward learning about the cruel, racist realities of American society. But there’s another large issue sitting at the crux of what’s otherwise a lawsuit about medical malpractice.

    Dealing with blackness has become burdensome and inconvenient for these two white mothers — because the biracial baby completely upended their decades of enjoying the spoils of white privilege.

    Jennifer Cramblett, a 36-year-old woman from Uniontown, Ohio, filed suit Sept. 29 against Chicago-area Midwest Sperm Bank because, according to the allegations, the clinic artificially inseminated and impregnated her with the wrong sperm. Cramblett told the Today Show that they chose a “blond hair, blue-eyed individual” so the child would closely resemble her partner.

    Those dreams were dashed in April 2012, when Cramblett ordered more sperm from the chosen donor, for a second child the couple planned on having. It was then that Cramblett learned there may have been a mix-up. Not long after, it was confirmed she had been impregnated with the wrong donor’s sperm.

    But the alleged medical malpractice is only part of what the lawsuit is concerned with, as seen in the documents made public by the Chicago Tribune. The filings paint a picture of a white couple’s discomfort with the admitted “steep learning curve” they have had to overcome in terms of understanding black people, black culture, black experiences and even how to do a black child’s hair.

    On page six of the lawsuit, for example, Cramblett describes living daily with the “fears, anxieties and uncertainty” about her child’s future in their all-white, racially intolerant town, as well as within a culturally insensitive family. Cramblett acknowledges that she wasn’t raised with a high degree of cultural competence about African-American people. She now complains about having to travel to a black neighborhood to get her daughter a decent haircut, where she’s “not overtly welcome” because Payton has “hair typical of an African-American girl” and not the hair of the white child they wanted in the first place.

    Still, Cramblett maintains that race is not an issue, despite the considerable amount of space taken up in court documents with respect to the racialized elements of the case.

    “I don’t find any problems with having a mixed-race child as far as I am concerned,” Cramblett told NBC News, tearfully noting that she loves her biracial child and wants her to grow up in a more inclusive environment. “[Payton] will understand it wasn’t about, ‘We didn’t want you. We wanted a white baby.’ That wasn’t what it was about.”


    • Two sides to a story says:

      They should feel blessed to have such a beautiful child.

    • bettykath says:

      It could be that a mixed race person who self-identified as white was the sperm donor. A second generation of mixed race could have light hair and blue eyes that could disappear in the next generation.

      Hope they keep a diary as they travel the road to white privilege awareness and then write a book about it.

  3. Thank you for this, Professor. McCulloch has let it be known that he has no concern about what anyone thinks of his decisions. His disdain for people seeking justice knows no bounds. Tension and frustration levels here in St. Louis are very high.

  4. fauxmccoy says:

    completely off topic but very relevant to past discussions:

    the corpse off jahi mcmath is still on a ventilator and is having involuntary movements which her insane family take as signs of life. their lawyer has now filed in alameda county, CA to have the death certificate reversed so that jahi can ‘come home’.

    this is serious shit. if the death certificate is over turned, it allows the family to sue children’s hospital for much more than just pain and suffering for the loss of their child, but makes them responsible for payment for ongoing treatment of a corpse. it also makes california taxpayers responsible for round the clock home care.

    the family and their lawyer are providing ‘proof’ via youtube that jahi is moving. the doctor who is involved in the questionable treatment of providing electrical shocks to specific body parts is a total quack who received his degree in psychology through an online university.

    i don’t think i need to share much more of my opinion than i already have. take a look at the videos the family and lawyer have provided. this reminds me all too much of mel brooks’ ‘young frankenstein’ which is usually a favorite of mine at this time of year :/

    • Trained Observer says:

      Was wondering last week what happened to this poor girl’s corpse. Still being victimized, I see. Criminal.

    • Malisha says:

      Excuse me: How do you “reverse” a death certificate?

      • fauxmccoy says:

        not quite sure, malisha. what i do know is that if my state starts issuing ‘born again’ birth certificates, i’ll be looking for an escape hatch.

    • Odious.

      Where is Frau Blucher when we need her?

    • Motor City Lady says:

      The Jahi McMath case is one I continue to monitor. I believe the “new” videos of her supposed voluntary movements of her foot and hand/arm, offered as evidence of her “coming back to life” are actually several months old, circa May of this year.

      Five months have passed since then.

      Obviously, if she were actually showing steady improvement since that time, the family and their attorney would provide more recent evidence. I suspect that just the opposite is the case: her shell of a body is predictably deteriorating. Even in these videos taken five months ago, the ravages of death are easily noted along the margins of her toe nails.

      They can paint them up pretty, but the flesh doesn’t lie.

      I can’t imagine family members using the corpse of a child to scam and profit from the public, but that’s the simple conclusion I have reached as pertains to (the ironically named) mother Nailah Winkfield and “Uncle Beast” Omari Sealey.

      • Motor City Lady says:

        From the article FauxMcCoy linked, above:

        “Philip DeFina, chief executive and chief scientific officer of the International Brain Research Foundation, said Jahi has responded to commands many other times.”

        This DeFina guy has a checkered past. (And “checkered” is being kind.)

        “DeFina’s experimental treatments with neurologist Jonathan Fellus for coma and brain injury have fetched as much as $100,000 from the families of patients who have not improved using traditional means.”

  5. bettykath says:

    re: the feds and fogen

    The article cites three sources that say there will be no charges. The official position: On Wednesday, a spokeswoman for the Justice Department said the investigation “is active and ongoing.”

    It’s possible that Malisha and the official position agree that “the” investigation is the SPD, while the three sources agree that there will be no charges against fogen. These are not in conflict. They could be talking about two different things.

    • Malisha says:

      I don’t believe they’re talking about two different things; I think they’re talking out of two sides of their mouth. Simply because they don’t want to put their foots into it. Until after elections.

  6. MDX says:

    I know this is not right in an objective world, but, if this shit keeps up, I feel the Black community has a right to have their version of the IRA and make the police the “RUC”.

    And those of us who that really care about the USA should be advocating for laws and police behavior that make the above unnecessary.

  7. a2nite says:

    What justice? Many American people think this is ok. Until white people get treated as badly or worse, I don’t see it getting better. The other way is to bankrupt the cities with lawsuits.

    • What justice? Many American people think this is ok.

      Unfortunately, you’re right, but as long as I am able to breathe, I will continue to speak out and condemn racism and injustice.

    • Malisha says:

      The federal courts merely throw those lawsuits out and then corrupt co-cover-up-conspirators in the federal appeals benches affirm the dismissals of the suits and then the SCOTUS blesses it 5/4.

  8. Bill Taylor says:

    this is obstruction of justice……..there is no way a grand jury would not indict IF the evidence has been shown, IF they have not heard the eye witnesses then indeed the prosecutor is obstructing justice, in reality going to the gj in the first place is obstruction because he already had more than enough to indict without any gj proceeding.

    • racerrodig says:

      Obstruction is still putting it mildly. If you or I was in Wilsons shoes, our view would be obstructed by vertical lines that are reinforced with horizontal plates.

      Like I said, I can’t fathom how a GJ can think for 1 minute that the world will buy this bs. Do they actually think this will all blow over ? Do they think Wilson can just go back to work like nothing happened ??

      • Malisha says:

        They think Wilson can keep living off the public dole whether or not he ever puts in another day’s work and they think that ultimately the groundswell of the people’s indignation and anger over the murder will give way and they think they will weather the storm and continue to be exploitive, murderous, fully entitled armed rulers of a downtrodden and cheated populace. Are they correct (history says 90% of the time they are) or not (does this country have it in us to progress to revolution?)? Remains to be seen.

        • Two sides to a story says:

          That his supporters forked over so much money shows me that they expect an indictment and his need for a legal fund.

  9. racerrodig says:

    What I read into this is that Darren Wilson has naked pictures of Prosecuting Attorney Bob McCulloch……….not only is he subverting…
    ……well, you know what I mean.

    In all seriousness, this is way beyond any scope of integrity. I still can’t fathom how they can’t see how obvious their corruption is. I mean WTF is Darren Wilson and why would there be such an obvious coverup ?

    Oh……….my bad, that’s what race baiting hate mongers do….sorry.

    I see no good coming from this coverup. Just like with every other killing WE can’t stop and we need to keep on keeping on. Shit ! we outnumber them by a huge margin.

  10. Malisha says:

    One thing I want to point out about the feds not prosecuting Fogen: when I called them after FOIA’ing the police in Sanford and finding out that they lied to the press in March 2012 about the “high-crime neighborhood” issue, they specifically told me that YES they WERE investigating the SPD, which is what I was saying they needed to do. The way I see it, Fogen was guilty of murder but he got away with it because of the racist, lying, dishonest, corrupt, and murderous police department. ONLY because of them. And he knew he would because they were not just accessories after the fact by letting him fake his defense and get away, but they were also conspirators with him because there had been at least two, and probably more than two, community complaints about Fogen running around the neighborhood with his loaded gun threatening people for nothing.


    The Feds lied when they assured me they were investigating SPD.


    The FEDS covered up the murder of Trayvon Martin AND the Feds covered up the conspiracy to deprive Trayvon Martin of his civil rights.


    • MDX says:

      So true.

      Pulled a gun, and threatened a Fed Ex driver – nothing done.

      Threatened, pulled a gun and killed Trayvon Martin, and Sanford was “forced” to do a “show trial” that did nothing.

      Threatened his father-in-law – nothing done.

      Threatened to kill a man who he “thought” was pointing at him – nothing done.

      • racerrodig says:

        He’ll get his. It’s only a matter of time. I’m sure someone who carries yet knows the score will be accosted by this nimrod and FogenPhoole will find out 3 things……..

        1) The guys carrying…..
        B) The guys a faster draw…..
        3) The guys a better shot…..

        ………or, Fogen will repeat what he did to Trayvon only with an adult who is able to pull Fogens pistol from him, throw it about 100 feet and proceed to kick Fogens ass.

        Then there will be video of Phat FogenPhoole accosting and threatening him……Justice…..with film at 11:00 !!!

        Of course Robbie the Racist will be back on the tour extolling the virtues of gun control…..

        • MDX says:

          Emboldened by taking advantage of easy prey, I believe that Fogen really thinks he is some sort of thug bad ass as the last road rage incident shows.

          He got lucky because the other guy, although having a gun, probably weighed the consequences of trying to “off” porky.

          A real thug don’t care about “consequences” and will be more than happy to accommodate the pig..

          This oldie but goodie is a message to fogen. “Chucky” is the context of the lyrics, IMO, means a loud talking thug wannabe. And as the songs goes, it is just a matter of time till jail or worse:

        • Two sides to a story says:

          Tick tock.

  11. Michelleo says:

    He’s going to get away with it. And the black people in Ferguson had better be training to be expert shooters, because their local police department will be coming for them once the riots start. They will not be caring who is elderly, young, innocent, or disabled. That place is going to go up in flames just the way racists have been prepping for it to do.

    • lyn says:

      Why would the people in Ferguson burn their homes and business down? That hurts only them and their habitat. It is a sad case, but rioting is not in anyone’s best interest.
      I thought Holder and the Feds were on the side of the people of Ferguson.

      • Bill Taylor says:

        since NOBODY has burned their homes down why did you post that please? and it has been 55 days of protest with only a couple of days weeks ago of any rioting and that was done by a FEW criminals that were NOT part of the protest………why not tell the TRUTH? the protests have been peaceful even in the face of continued abuse of their rights by the police.

      • SearchingMind says:

        “It is a sad case, but rioting is not in anyone’s best interest.”

        WTF (?!), Lyn. Please tell me that this is a rare moment of poor choice of word. Think of what you just said for a moment, consider what you said in the light of the, unnecessary, beastly killing of Mike Brown and tell me that any ethnic/racial/religious group – White or Black, Muslim or Christian, Asian or Jew, etc.should quietly go to the slaughter like the sacrificial lamb. No, Lyn, it is not “a sad case”, it is a slaughter (not even an execution) of a member of a racial minority group by someone who believes his victim to be an “Untermensch” and that he can take said life whenever he wants and in a way that best satisfies his diseased mind!

        Today the best of our pilots are bombing foreign countries trying to save the poor Kurds, Yazidis and Christians from the genocide being carried out against them by ISIS/ISIL. Most unfortunately we are no better than those we fight; our country is racist, ISIS/ISIL is not; we are dishonest in that we preach human rights and civil liberties but the racial minorities, especially AAs, living among us are considered less human, can be gunned down at any moment with reckless abandon and are constantly scared for their lives anytime they come into contact with “law” enforcement officials, whereas ISIS/ISIL is clear about its motives and objective and don’t lie like we do, etc.

        Ferguson will – if due care is not taken – blow up in our faces and engulf this nation in an inferno for abuses committed by “law” enforcement officials that amount to crimes against humanity, while we hypocrites are busy fighting the same crimes in foreign countries and pointing our hypocritical fingers at North Korea.

        I don’t support riots. But the day AAs take up arms against any State Of The Union because of what happened to Mike Brown, I will be one of the first to join the battle on their side! Mike Brown was a “nobody”. His parents are very poor and as such belong to the “weakest link” of the society and are as such also “nobodies”. Mike Brown was slaughtered as if he was a moose and left on the street, his blood streaming out of the middle of his head and flowing down the street, while his butcher circled around him getting his thrill, while watching him die like an animal. This make Mike Brown my client and the client of any decent person who won’t stand for the abuse, humiliation and wanton destruction of the “weak”, the type that our society don’t give a damn about, but all you care about – if seems – are “homes and businesses”? Lyn?

      • I believe it’s pretty clear that outsiders were responsible for the rioting and no homes were burned down. Protests have been peaceful since the first few days.

        Your sources of information appear to be unreliable.

      • PhillyBoyRoy says:

        Holder is black so he is on “their” side.

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