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Congresswoman Karen Bass

Representing the 37th District of California

Statement on Missouri grand jury failing to indict in Michael Brown shooting

November 24, 2014
Press Release

Congresswoman Karen Bass (D-Calif.), a member of the House Judiciary Committee, issued the following statement after a St. Louis County grand jury failed to indict Officer Darren Wilson in shooting Michael Brown:

"I am deeply disturbed that a St. Louis County grand jury did not issue any indictments against Officer Darren Wilson for the shooting of Michael Brown. This announcement continues a trend of injustice that has rightfully created an environment of anger and concern in Ferguson, Missouri and across the United States.

"From the onset, Ferguson law officials have been negligent in their handling of this tragic death. Ferguson officials botched this case from the beginning when they left Michael Brown’s body on the street for over four hours after he was killed. They were mean-spirited when they leaked information to the media to assassinate Michael Brown’s character. The Ferguson Police Department violated the constitutional rights of the Ferguson community when they attacked and tear gassed lawful protesters. And tonight the grand jury attacked justice by not holding Officer Wilson accountable for his actions.

"Even though the process has ended locally, I will continue to insist that the United States Department of Justice conduct its own investigation to determine if the Ferguson police violated Michael Brown's civil rights.

"I understand how many of us are upset by tonight’s announcement. My heart goes out to Michael Brown’s parents, who are grieving the loss of their son while calling on protestors to channel their frustration to create positive change. Let us honor their wishes and answer this injustice with peaceful protest—lifting our voice in unison in a chorus for justice and free from additional violence."