Ferguson Grand Jury Verdict: Officer Darren Wilson Not Charged in Shooting of Michael Brown

Nation/world

Lesley McSpadden, mother of Michael Brown, is escorted away from the front of the Ferguson Police Department after a grand jury’s decision was delivered on Nov. 24, 2014 in Ferguson, Missouri. A St. Louis County grand jury has decided to not indict Ferguson police Officer Darren Wilson in the shooting of Michael Brown that sparked riots in Ferguson in August. (Credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

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A Missouri grand jury has decided not to indict Ferguson police Officer Darren Wilson in the August 9 shooting death of Michael Brown, St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Robert McCulloch said Monday night.

The issue has become a flashpoint for racial tension in the St. Louis suburb; Brown was black and Wilson is white.

Brown's father and others have called for calm ahead of the grand jury's decision, which has left the community on edge amid concerns over the possibility of violent protests.

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Speaking from the White House, President Barack Obama said the grand jury outcome was bound to be the subject of "intense disagreement" across the country, regardless of what was decided.

"I join Michael’s parents in asking anyone who protests this decision to do so peacefully," Obama said. "Michael Brown’s parents have lost more than anyone. We should be honoring their wishes."

In a statement, the Brown family said it were "profoundly disappointed" in the grand jury decision.

McCulloch, meanwhile, spoke before reporters in a courtroom, describing 25 days of grand jury meetings that featured 60 witnesses.

"The physical and scientific evidence examined by the grand jury, combined with the witness statements, supported and substantiated by that physical evidence, tells the accurate and tragic story of what happened," McCulloch said before offering a synopsis of the testimony.

Many of the witness statements -- some shared with the media -- were contradictory, and during the grand jury process, many witnesses admitted they didn't see the shooting or heard about it from others, McCulloch said. There were also conflicting witness accounts of whether Michael Brown had his hands up when he was shot, the prosecuting attorney said.

After the autopsy of Michael Brown was released, no additional witnesses came forward to say Brown was shot in the back as he ran, and "several witnesses" who claimed this version adjusted their story in subsequent statements, McCulloch said.

During his testimony before the grand jurors, Wilson faced questions about why he didn't use lesser force or why he didn't run away, McCulloch said.

KTLA's Melissa Pamer contributed to this article.

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