Tags: Ferguson in Crisis | Darren Wilson | Michael Brown

CNN: Some Ferguson Witnesses Had 'Little to No Credibility'

By    |   Monday, 15 Dec 2014 11:22 AM

The grand jury investigating the fatal shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri faced numerous witnesses "who couldn’t be believed at all," CNN reported.

The network said its examination of thousands of pages of grand jury documents "turned up several examples of testimony that came with little to no credibility."

According to Witness 35, for example, Brown was "on his knees" when Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson shot him in the head. But under cross examination, the version of events that witness gave unraveled. When challenged by a prosecutor who said his account was a forensic impossibility, the witness admitted he had made it up.

"Are you telling us that the only thing that’s true about all of your statements before this is that you saw that police officer shoot him at point-blank range?" a grand juror asked the witness. "Yes," he replied.

Witness 40, who supported Wilson’s version of what happened, was challenged by prosecutors who doubted whether she was in Ferguson on the day of the shooting. She changed some of the details of what she claimed to have witnessed and admitted having learned some details of the case from news accounts. Her credibility was further undermined by a comment she posted online the day Brown was killed in which she said: "They need to kill the f----ing n------. It is like an ape fest."

When Witness 37 gave conflicting descriptions of what he claimed to have seen, a prosecutor asked him "which one is really your memory or did you see this at all?" The witness replied: "If none of my stuff is making any sense, like why do y'all keep contacting me?"

Witness 22 admitted that "I didn’t see what I told the FBI what [sic] I saw."

Legal experts gave differing explanations as to why prosecutors — who ordinarily screen out such unreliable witnesses in order not to waste a grand jury’s time with such dubious testimony — did not do so. Some experts said that if prosecutors had refrained from presenting any prospective witnesses to grand jurors, they would have been accused of a "cover up."

CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin, on the other hand,  questioned whether "throwing all the evidence" before the grand jury was "appropriate." But he conceded that a conviction would have been very unlikely if the case had gone to trial.

The allegations of wrongdoing have led to threats of violence against Wilson, who is no longer on the Ferguson police force. Off-duty police officers in the Ferguson area have volunteered their time to provide protection to Wilson and his family.

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The grand jury investigating the fatal shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri faced numerous witnesses “who couldn’t be believed at all,” CNN reported.
Darren Wilson, Michael Brown
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2014-22-15
Monday, 15 Dec 2014 11:22 AM
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