The Grand Jury did not exonerate Officer Darren Wilson

December 2, 2014

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Good afternoon:

Jeff Roorda, the spokesperson for the St.Louis Police Officers’s Association lied when he said the grand jury exonerated Officer Darren Wilson. As a former law enforcement officer, he knows that is not true.

The grand jury merely decided that the prosecution failed to convince nine of the twelve members that there was probable cause to believe Wilson murdered Michael Brown. That decision is not an adjudication of the merits of the case and is not binding on anyone. A new grand jury could be summoned tomorrow to reinvestigate the case and it could decide to indict Wilson. He would have no legal basis to attack the validity of the indictment by arguing that a previous grand jury did not return an indictment.

All judges, prosecutors, police and defense counsel know this to be true. Roorda does too and this is not the first time he lied.

He was fired for lying in a police report and failed upward to his present position. That is a sign of systemic corruption.

For the following reasons, the grand jury’s decision was illegitimate and should be dismissed.

The fix was in from the very beginning.

Wilson never filled out an offense report and was never asked to fill one out.

They allowed him to drive unaccompanied to the station house and clean-up in the wash room with no witness present. They let him place his gun into evidence and made arrangements to let him meet with his lawyer in an interview room before asking him any questions.

That. Never. Happens.

The extreme pro-police bias of the prosecution that is evident throughout the grand jury witness transcripts, including an unconstitutional legal definition of self-defense submitted by the prosecution regarding when a police officer may use deadly force, so corrupted the grand jury process as to render its decision a nullity. This conclusion cannot be legitimately questioned given that Wilson voluntarily testified for four hours without challenge by the prosecution.

That. Never. Happens.

Consider the following grand jury basics:

1) The terms ‘guilty,’ ‘not guilty’ and ‘presumption of innocence’ are legal terms of art that have specific definitions. These terms do not apply to a person who has not been charged with a crime.

2) The ‘presumption of innocence’ does not mean innocence in fact. The presumption only applies to defendants who have been charged with a crime when a fact finder, be it a judge or jury, deliberates on reaching a verdict. If it were otherwise, no defendant would ever be denied bail and there would be no conditions of release.

3) The grand jury was not required or instructed to presume Wilson was innocent and it did not find him innocent. It found that the evidence presented was insufficient to establish probable cause to believe Wilson committed a crime when he killed Michael Brown. This decision is not an adjudication and does not prevent another grand jury from considering the evidence and returning an indictment.

4) No rule requires anyone to presume Darren Wilson is innocent. He is neither ‘guilty’ nor ‘not guilty’ because those terms are adjudications and he has not been charged with a crime. Anyone who says he is innocent because he must be presumed innocent is mistaken.

The entire grand jury process was a whitewash and should be disregarded.


Robert McCulloch should be held responsible for using the grand jury to whitewash Darren Wilson

November 26, 2014

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Good afternoon:

Prosecutor Robert McCulloch’s use of the grand jury to whitewash Officer Daren Wilson’s execution of Michael Brown behind a veil of secrecy is failing miserably and he deserves to bear the consequences for his perversion of justice.

One of the fundamental principles of our system of justice is the right to confront our accusers in a public trial by cross examining them vigorously.

Effective cross examination exposes biases, prejudices and the liars.

Witnesses who testify before a grand jury are rarely cross examined.

Prosecutors and grand juries go together like peanut butter and jelly. Prosecutors point and grand juries accuse.

Here is an example of the tough questions the assistant prosecutor asked Officer Darren Wilson.

Q: Okay, and you say something to them, did they say something to you first?

A: No. You want me to just go with the whole thing?

Q: Sure, go ahead. Let’s start there.

[GJ, Vol.V p. 207]

Go ahead and tell your story, what happened next, and then what did you do? are not are not cross examination.

Here is an example of cross examination.

You just told the members of the grand jury a few minutes ago at Volume V, page 202:

Q: Okay. Did you get any other calls between the time of the sick baby call and your interaction with Michael Brown and Dorian Johnson?

A: While on the sick case call, a call came out for a stealing in progress from the local market on West Florissant, that the suspects traveling toward QT. I didn’t hear the entire call, I was on my portable radio, which isn’t exactly the best. I did hear that a suspect was wearing a black shirt and that a box of Cigarillos was stolen.

Q: And this was your call or you just heard the call?

A: It was not my call. I heard the call.

A: Yes, that is what I said.

Q: And you were under oath when you said that, right?

A: Yes.

Q: And you are as certain about that as you are the rest of your testimony today, is that correct?

A: Yes.

Q: But you told your Sergeant, your direct supervisor, just a few minutes after the shooting that you were not aware of that call and you repeated that to him several times after that during the days after the shooting, didn’t you?

If he admits making the statement, you stare him down until he looks away and then cross your arms and turn your back to the witness for at least 2 minutes until the silence is screaming.

Then you commence the death by a thousand cuts that is the hallmark of every great cross examiner.

If he denies making the statement multiple times to his Sergeant, you put the sergeant on the stand to impeach him.

None of this happened.

And now everyone knows that Robert McCulloch used the grand jury to protect Darren Wilson.

They are marked men. Don’t ever let them forget it.


Grand Jury Basics, as Ferguson Waits for a Decision

November 20, 2014

by Crane-Station/cross posted at Firedoglake

 

In the United States, a person cannot be prosecuted for a felony unless there is probable cause to believe that a person has committed a felony. Pursuant to the Fifth Amendment, all federal felony prosecutions must be by grand jury indictment, unless the defendant waives his right to be prosecuted by indictment and agrees to be prosecuted by information.

This means federal prosecutors present their cases to a grand jury together with the indictment and ask the grand jury to review and approve the indictment. However, this requirement is not binding on the states. The states have the option to either file by information in order to charge someone with a felony, or a prosecutor can go to a grand jury to get the indictment. Missouri is one of these states. The key legal matter is that there has to be probable cause to believe that a crime occurred, and someone other than the prosecutor- either a judge or a grand jury- has to decide.

The interesting issue in this case is why the prosecutor decided to go to the grand jury, as opposed to charging Darren Wilson by information. The likely reason that the prosecutor did not file by information is that it would have potentially been a job killer. If he charged Wilson with murder, the police would have turned against him, but the citizens of Ferguson and their supporters would have and were turning against him because he did not. To extricate himself from the dilemma, he took the case to the grand jury. That said, here are some of the characteristics of the grand jury:

Who is in a grand jury room?
-There are 12 members in the Ferguson grand jury. These twelve members were summoned in by the clerk of the court.
-They serve a term, where maybe they meet once a week, but they don’t meet every day.
-They choose a foreperson.
– Only the members of the grand jury, the court reporter and a prosecutor are allowed in the room, along with the witness, which is usually the arresting officer.
-Sometimes they bring other witnesses. All witnesses testify under oath.
-No judge is present in the grand jury room.
-No defense attorney is present in the room.
-The grand jurors are sworn to secrecy.

Are they sequestered? Is there a selection process, ie, voir dire?
-It would be impractical to sequester a grand jury because of the length of the term they serve, so they come and go during their term of service. This may be once a week or even once a month. Grand jurors are not sequestered.
-There is no voir dire with grand jury selection, so grand jurors do not have to disclose their opinions about various issues.
-There is no one to strike a grand juror from the panel, so grand jurors are not “stricken for cause.”

What is a true bill and what is a no bill?
-The grand jury can issue a “true bill,” which is an indictment. The defendant then pleads guilty or not guilty.
-The grand jury can issue a “no true bill”, which means the grand jury did not find enough evidence to establish probable cause, to move the case forward for prosecution.
-The grand juries sometimes write reports about what they have investigated, for instance, systematic problems in the justice system.
-It takes nine votes to indict in Missouri; the vote does not have to be unanimous, for a true bill.
-The foreperson of the grand jury signs and returns, or hands down the indictment, which is filed in the Court Clerk’s Office. Grand juries rarely ever refuse to indict.

What are the possibilities for charges that Officer Wilson could face in Ferguson?
-First-degree murder for the killing of Michael Brown.
-Second-degree murder.
-Voluntary manslaughter.
-Involuntary manslaughter.
-No charges.

Do grand jurors decide if someone is guilty of committing a crime?
-No. Unlike trial jurors, the grand jury decides whether there is probable cause that a crime was committed. They do not to decide guilt.
-The rules of evidence do not apply and hearsay is admissible. That means that prosecutors can ask leading questions.
-Grand jurors are not to disclose evidence that they hear, and there is a penalty if they do.

It is notable that Darren Wilson, who is the target of the investigation, testified before this grand jury without invoking his constitutional right to remain silent, and without any agreement that involved immunity from prosecution in exchange for his testimony. A person would have to be insane to testify in this situation, and no lawyer would advise someone to do that, unless he had assurances from that prosecutor, that the prosecutor was on his side. That is the fly in this ointment- that Darren Wilson testified before the grand jury rather than invoking his constitutional right to remain silent.

It doesn’t take a weatherman to figure out which way the wind is blowing.

What journalists covering Ferguson need to know about grand juries


Ferguson News That’s Not Expected Until Next Week

October 29, 2014

by Crane-Station

Yesterday, CNN reported that police Chief  Thomas Jackson will step down “as part of the effort by city officials to reform the police department.” In a move that CNN reports may not happen until next week, Jackson will step down, and the St. Louis County police chief will assume the management position.

Today, Chief Jackson is publicly denying that the CNN story is true. The St. Louis Dispatch reports:

“It’s absolutely not true. Nobody has asked me to resign, nor have I been fired,” Jackson said.

He added: “If I do resign, it will be my own choice.”

CNN’s report cited unnamed “government officials familiar with the discussions ongoing between local, state and federal officials” as saying Jackson is expected to step down.

Mayor James Knowles III confirmed that Jackson has not resigned. “He’s stayed strong with us till this point,” Knowles said by text. “Don’t see that changing.”

Which version is true? CNN says that it relied on government officials who are familiar with ongoing discussions. Perhaps it is a matter of semantics. If the chief decides to spend more time with the family, it will be his choice to do so. If he leaves to explore other options, he will not have been fired or forced out or run out on a rail or anything of the sort. No. It will most definitely be his “own choice.” Either way, he likely won’t choose to make a choice to not stay, until next week. Next week is a big week though, because after the elections on Tuesday, the grand jury (which has been leaking like a sieve) will likely announce its decision, not to indict Officer Darren Wilson for killing Michael Brown.

This is posted at Anonymous Operation Ferguson: Grand Jury Leak:

Monday – October 27, 2014 3:00 PM ET USA

Last night we announced that we have received over the past several days a series of leaks from two separate and unrelated sources regarding the long awaited Grand Jury decision regarding the murder of Mike Brown by Ferguson PD Officer Darren Wilson. In our opinion after careful analysis the sources are reliable, and the information we are about to reveal is true. Both sources are government employees with access to both internal government as well as confidential police communications. For reasons of safety we will not be revealing anything further on either our sources or the material leaked to us. The following is a synopses of the leaked information:

On or about November 10, 2014 the Grand Jury decision will be announced. Darren Wilson will NOT be indicted on ANY charges related to the murder of Mike Brown. All local police Chiefs and jail commanders have been notified to begin preparing for major civil unrest. Governor Nixon has been notified of the impending announcement and has ordered the Missouri National Guard to begin preparations for a possible re-enstatement of the martial law that was declared at the beginning of the Ferguson protests.

READ MORE…

Also:

As more information is leaked to us we will update this document. Please follow us on Twitter @OpFerguson and visit our website athttp://www.OperationFerguson.cf where this leak and other valuable information related to the Ferguson Movement is posted and regularly updated.

http://pastebin.com/CJ5ipU7W

Does this surprise you, or not? Just now on television news, MSNBC is also saying that there will likely be a big “shake-up” in the Ferguson Police Department that will include a transition of management to St. Louis County. The one disturbing development though, is the build-up for “civil unrest” that will follow the likely non-indictment. In other words, it appears that there is some not-really secret preparation for even more killing, in the streets. They are expecting all hell to break loose, and they are afraid to announce the decision before the election. It appears that an anticipatory disbanding of the police department is the trade-off for Darren Wilson’s anticipated non-indictment next week.

I hope I am wrong.


Police officer shot in #Ferguson last night

September 28, 2014

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Good morning:

A police officer was shot in the arm last night in Ferguson while investigating a possible burglary at a community center. The shooter was one of two suspects who fled the scene evading arrest. The shooting does not appear to be related to the protests and the officer was not seriously injured.

For more information, go here.

In case you missed it, Ferguson policed chief, Tom Jackson’s apology to the citizens of Ferguson for his butchery of the Michael Brown investigation was scornfully rejected and his effort to march with the protesters Thursday night provoked loud objections, some pushing and shoving and a few arrests.

So I am nominating Chief Jackson for a Darwin Award.

Some people really are too stupid to pour piss out of a boot.

Meanwhile, the clock is ticking on the St. Louis County prosecutor’s effort to prevent the grand jury from indicting Officer Darren Wilson for murdering Michael Brown.

The whole world is watching.


Featuring: LLMPapa with Four Witness Verification Audios in #MichaelBrown Shooting

August 26, 2014

Good morning.

LLMPapa has posted four witness verification audios to YouTube. The audios contain a recording of the shots fired, along with four witness statements to press. The witnesses describe what they heard, and the audios afford an opportunity to listen to recorded shots at the same time. Many thanks to LLMPapa for turning our attention to the recorded shots and their correlation to witness statements.

Witness Verification Audio #1:

Witness Verification Audio #2:

Witness Verification Audio #3:

Witness Verification Audio #4:


Rest in Peace #MikeBrown, You will not be Forgotten

August 25, 2014

Monday, August 25, 2014

Good morning:

Today is Mike Brown’s funeral.

May peace be with you.

I believe you were executed by a man who has lost his way and more than once I have felt an urge to call upon the darkness to obliterate him from the surface of the Earth for what he did.

I have had the same urge to put a pox on the house of every person who has contributed money to the man who killed you.

I am not going to do that.

I have turned my back to the darkness.

I am going to follow the path of light.

And from this place expose the truth.

Darren Wilson cannot hide from God.

He will be held to answer

And so will all of his supporters.

Rest in Peace.

You will not be forgotten.


#Ferguson: Darren Wilson’s prearrest silence may be admissible

August 23, 2014

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Good afternoon:

BettyKath asked the following question in the comments to yesterday’s post, Grand Jury should indict Darren Wilson because his claim of self-defense is contradicted by autopsy results and all eyewitnesses.

Didn’t the Supreme Court rule that maintaining silence before the Miranda warning, i.e. before being arrested, can be interpreted as a sign of guilt?

This is an excellent question regarding the admissibility of prearrest silence and my answer is the subject of today’s blog.

Yes, prearrest silence can be interpreted as evidence of guilt unless the suspect/defendant specifically invokes his fifth amendment right to remain silent. In Jenkins v. Anderson, 447 U.S. 231 (1980), the defendant did not report the killing to the police until he turned himself in to police two weeks later. He told them that he stabbed the victim to death in self-defense. At trial, the prosecutor cross examined him regarding his failure to report the killing and to claim self-defense when it happened. He also commented on his silence in closing argument claiming that it was evidence of guilt.

The Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) affirmed his conviction rejecting his argument that the comments on his prearrest silence violated his fifth amendment right to remain silent. The Court held that his silence was admissible because a defendant must expressly claim his right to remain silent for it to apply.

See also Salinas v. Texas, 133 S. Ct. 2174 (2013).

Pursuant to Jenkins and Salinas, Wilson’s failure to fill out the incident report (i.e., his silence) will be admissible against him at trial unless he expressly refused to do so citing his fifth amendment right to remain silent.

Apparently, he did not do that because the cover sheet is filled out, but the section where his narrative report should be is blank.

If he orally invoked his right to remain silent when he turned in his blank incident report, his prearrest silence will not be admissible.

In any event, the prosecutor doesn’t have to comment on Wilson’s silence to get an indictment because, as I stated yesterday, he can obtain it by merely calling the eyewitnesses and presenting the autopsy report.

Although Wilson’s prearrest silence will not be admissible at trial, assuming he expressly invoked his right to remain silent, we also have to consider whether his oral statements to others that he shot in self-defense will be admissible.

No, they are not admissible because they constitute inadmissible self-serving hearsay.

That leaves Darren Wilson between a rock and a hard place.

He must testify in order to get his ‘bum-rush’ defense into evidence and a self-defense instruction. However, if he testifies, none of the eyewitnesses saw a ‘bum rush’ and if he tells a different story, he can be confronted with his ‘bum rush’ story.

Not an enviable situation to be in even with $225,000 in donations for his defense.

If you appreciate what we do, please make a donation.

Thank you,

Fred


Grand Jury should indict Darren Wilson because his claim of self-defense is contradicted by autopsy results and all eyewitnesses

August 22, 2014

Friday, August 22, 2014

Good afternoon:

The St. Louis County grand jury should indict Darren Wilson because the results of the independent autopsy and all of the eyewitnesses contradict his reported claim of self-defense and he has asserted his fifth amendment right to remain silent by refusing to fill out an incident report regarding the shooting.

Game within the Game

Darren Wilson has obviously been discussing his legal predicament with an attorney. As a result of that discussion, he decided not to fill out an incident report on the ground that his statement might tend to incriminate him.

That was a smart but risky move.

Smart because he has a fifth amendment right to remain silent and the members of the grand jury cannot assume that his silence is an admission of guilt.

Risky because he is the only witness who would testify that he shot Mike Brown in self-defense. All of the eyewitnesses have described a murder, not a justifiable homicide in self-defense. Therefore, if he does not testify, the grand jury will have little choice except to indict him for murder.

He could go for the brass ring by agreeing to testify before the grand jury, but he would lock himself into a story by doing so and could still be indicted for murder because his story is contradicted by all of the eyewitnesses.

Recall that the grand jury need only find that there is probable cause to believe that he was not in imminent danger of death or serious injury when he shot an unarmed Mike Brown multiple times, including twice in the head, killing him.

Yee olde bum-rush defense ain’t got no legs since none of the eyewitnesses saw Mike Brown rush the officer and his body was found right where he stopped and turned around to face the officer, 35 feet from the police vehicle.

Looks like he has decided to forgo testifying before the grand jury, in essence conceding that he will be indicted.

He’s in a very difficult situation, but I think he made the right choice.

Don’t forget that his lawyer could not be present, if he testified before the grand jury. There’s danger in them thar hills.

Meanwhile, he can derive comfort from the news today that people have contributed more than $225,000 for his defense at his beg-site.

Meanwhile, the racist right-wing-hate-machine marches on engaging in non-stop victim character assassination by lie and constant media repetition of the racist yee olde bum-rush defense in the court of public opinion until everybody forgets that Mike Brown was executed for jaywalking.

Welcome to Zimmerman II.


Governor Nixon should appoint a special prosecutor to investigate the #MikeBrown shooting in #Ferguson

August 22, 2014

Friday, August 22, 2014

Good morning:

For the following reasons, I believe Governor Nixon should appoint a special prosecutor to investigate the Mike Brown shooting in Ferguson, Missouri.

Given recent developments, we can conclude that there are now reasonable grounds to believe that the Ferguson Police Department is engaged in a conspiracy to tamper with evidence and obstruct justice in order to prevent the prosecution of Officer Darren Wilson for the crime of first degree murder.

Based on the accounts of multiple eyewitnesses to the shooting and the results of the independent autopsy conducted by Dr. baden and Professor Shawn Parcells, there are reasonable grounds to believe that the officer,

(1) pursued an unarmed Mike Brown, who was running away after an argument regarding walking in the street instead of on the sidewalk, and

(2) executed Mike Brown after he stopped, turned around and was surrendering to his authority.

We now know that the Ferguson Police Department has promoted two lies in an attempt to justify the shooting.

The first lie was that Mike Brown committed a strong-arm robbery to obtain Swisher Sweet cigarillos from a convenience store without paying for them. A portion of a store video showing Brown pushing a clerk was released by the department to support this claim. However, the store never reported a robbery, denies that a robbery occurred, and the remainder of the tape shows that he paid for the cigarillos.

The second lie advanced by the department was that Brown had punched the officer in the side of the face fracturing the orbital socket of the officer’s right eye while the officer was still seated in his vehicle.

My theory all along has been that the door hit Wilson in the face as he was attempting to get out. Vehicle doors are curved inward at the top and they have door stops so that they do not swing all the way open or closed, unless pushed.

I know from personal experience that if I park on an incline and do not open the door to the first stop, it will swing back toward the closed position and bump me in the head as I’m trying to get out.

I suspect the door hit Wilson in the head with a little help from Brown or Johnson after it hit them when Wilson opened it and attempted to get out. I doubt they applied anything more than defensive force to prevent being struck by the door.

If Mike Brown had punched Wilson, I would have expected to see some evidence of bruising or skinned knuckles to his hand, but Dr. Baden and Professor Parcells did not mention any injuries to his hands except for the deep bullet-graze to the palm of his right hand just below the thumb.


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