Darren Wilson’s injuries and statements made during the recently concluded grand jury trial are starting to be made public, hours after 12 jurors declined to indict the Ferguson, Mo. officer in the August 9 fatal shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown. As expected, the late release of the decision touched off a violent night of wanton devastation, lootings, protests and acts of arson.
Writes The Wire, via Yahoo News on Nov. 25: “After killing Michael Brown, Officer Darren Wilson was seen in the emergency department at Christian Hospital in St. Louis. Some just-released photos taken at the time documented the extent of Wilson’s injuries. The images were later presented as evidence to the grand jury. Wilson testified that Brown punched him in the face, in addition to grappling with him for control of the officer’s handgun. Wilson’s medical record from the emergency department culminates with the diagnosis of ‘facial contusion’ (a bruise).”
The report debunks the widely reported rumor that Wilson was admitted to the hospital with a broken orbital bone. For the first time, the six-year officer’s statements and transcripts have been made available. In them, Wilson recounts what he describes as a potentially “fatal” altercation with the six-foot-four, nearly 300-pound Brown.
A portion of the court records, seen here, show that Wilson feared for his life when Brown started a confrontation with Wilson while half inside of his patrol car. “I felt another one of those punches in my face would knock me out or worse. I mean, it was, he’s obviously bigger than I was, and stronger, and the—I’ve already taken two to the face, and I don’t think I would—the third one could be fatal if he hit me right,” Wilson said.
Court records also speak of the fact that Brown was violent, belligerent and continued to taunt Wilson, telling him that Wilson was too much of a “pussy” to actually shoot Brown. Wilson discharged his weapon 12 times in multiple bursts as a charging Brown continued to run at Wilson.
According to the grand jury records, when Wilson was asked by investigators what he was thinking during the confrontation, Wilson replied that he was scared for his life. That Wilson felt his life was being put in jeopardy was key to establishing that the use of deadly force was justified. Jurors traditionally have afforded law enforcement a wide latitude in this respect.
He’s gonna kill me, how do I survive? How do I live through this, basically? – Darren Wilson under Aug. 10 questioning as to the confrontation with Michael Brown
Wilson said Brown was uncontrollable. “For lack of a better word, crazy. I’ve never seen that,” Wilson said. “I mean, it was very aggravated, aggressive, hostile. Just, you could tell he was looking through you,” later adding that he “felt like a five-year-old holding onto Hulk Hogan. That’s just how big he felt and how small I felt just from grasping his arm.”
Wilson said he confronted Brown and his friend Dorian Johnson – whose statements in the weeks after Brown’s death have proven to be complete lies – when Wilson saw the two black men walking directly in the middle of the road. Wilson was aware of a recent report that the nearby Ferguson Market had been robbed of cigars and the store owner manhandled.
“I told ’em, ‘Hey guys, why don’t you walk on the sidewalk,’” Wilson recounted to detectives. “The first one said, ‘We’re almost to our destination.’” Wilson said he again asked the men to move to the sidewalk, and Brown replied: “F— what you have to say.” Wilson said he then backed up his police car and attempted to get out, but Brown pushed the door back in.
NBC News picks up the story:
When Wilson tried to get out of his car, Brown cursed and shut the door. The window was open, however, and Brown — “swinging and punching at me from outside the vehicle” — made at least three attempts to get into the car at through the open window. Brown landed at least two “solid blows” with a closed fist on Wilson’s face, the officer said.
When Brown turned to hand his companion, “several packs of cigarillos” that had been reported stolen, Wilson used the opportunity to grab Brown’s arm, but Brown was too big and powerful to control.
“I was already trapped and didn’t know what he was gonna do to me but I knew it wasn’t gonna be good,” Wilson said. Because Brown had him pinned, Wilson couldn’t reach his Mace canister, he said. And he wasn’t carrying a Taser, so he pulled his SIG Sauer .40-caliber P229 handgun.
The pair tussled in the window of the cruiser, and Wilson said his “firearm was in his control around my hand.” Shots were fired, and Brown was struck, at which point he started running away. Wilson called for backup, got out, and then saw Brown turn to him. “He stopped, he turned, looked at me, made like a grunting noise and had the most intense aggressive face I’ve ever seen on a person,” Wilson said. “I fired multiple shots, but he was still in the same state: still charging, hands still in his waistband, hadn’t slowed down.”
Sound off below. What are your thoughts on Darren Wilson’s injuries and testimony?