by Shaun King
Mike Brown, an unarmed teenager, was shot and killed in the middle of the street by Ferguson, Missouri police officer Darren Wilson on a hot and hazy Saturday afternoon on August 9, 2014.
For over two months, people have practically begged the St. Louis County Police Department to release a detailed incident report of the shooting. Rather quietly, it was recently announced that the police will not be doing any such thing. In an interview with the Washington Post, Officer Brian Schellman, spokesman for the department, confirmed that that the police have no intention of releasing it whatsoever. Schellman said there are only two conditions in which the report will ever be released: If the grand jury in the Darren Wilson case decides against an indictment, or if Wilson is indicted and the report is used in court. Otherwise, we won't be seeing it.
With this absence of information, the public has practically been forced to piece together public evidence to create a timeline of the day.
Below is a working theory of the killing of Mike Brown based on five things: six eyewitness accounts, confirmed audio of the fired gunshots, dozens of photos from the Aug. 9 shooting scene on Canfield Drive, visits to the crime scene by volunteers, and the publicly released autopsy results.
The typical police firearm usually holds 12-15 rounds (up to 17) to a magazine with possibly one bullet in the chamber, and Wilson may have nearly unloaded his entire gun during this incident.
Amazingly, a young man living in an apartment on Canfield Drive was using a mobile app called Glide in which he was recording a message to his girlfriend during the final moments of Brown's life. The time stamp and location of the recording were authenticated by the technology company.
From the moment Mike Brown first saw Darren Wilson until he was laying face down, dead, on Canfield Drive, was less than two-and-half minutes.
Before Glide App Video Messaging Audio:
12:00 PM: Mike Brown and Dorian Johnson are casually walking in the middle of Canfield Drive. This was/is a common practice on this street on a Saturday afternoon in this neighborhood. They notice a police SUV coming toward them.
12:00 PM: Officer Darren Wilson, driving past them, slows down and tells them "to get the fuck on the sidewalk." Brown remains silent while Dorian Johnson tells Wilson that they are just a minute away from their destination.
12:00 PM: Wilson, having passed them by, violently puts the car in reverse, screeching the tires in the street, nearly hitting Brown and Johnson, who are forced to jump out of the way, stops right next to them, and thrusts open his door. The driver's side door only opens only a few inches because it hits Mike Brown and ricochets back into Wilson.
12:01 PM: A struggle ensues at the window of the police SUV, which causes Brown to lose his red, fitted baseball cap, found at this exact location after the shooting. Wilson immediately grabs at the neck of Brown as Brown tries to pull away, Wilson pulls his weapon, and threatens to shoot Brown. Brown's hands remain outside of the SUV, and he uses the vehicle as leverage to pull away.
During this struggle, the first shot is fired from inside the vehicle by Wilson. It hits Brown in his chest/arm area.
Fearing for their lives, Brown and Johnson flee in different directions. Brown loses one of his flip-flops approximately 20 feet from the SUV. Johnson hides behind a black Monte Carlo.
Wilson, gun drawn, exits his SUV and prepares to fire at a fleeing Brown.
Begin Glide App Audio:
12:02:14 PM.: Wilson pursues Brown as he flees some 100-plus feet from the police vehicle. During the pursuit, firing at the back of Brown, Wilson fires shots two (12:02:16 PM), three (12:02:16 PM), four (12:02:17 PM), five (12:02:17 PM), and six (12:02:17 PM) within milliseconds under three seconds, missing a fleeing Brown.
12:02:18 PM: Shot seven grazes Brown's right forearm, at which point Brown turns around to surrender. There is a three-second pause after shot seven, as Wilson continues his pursuit of a surrendering Brown, closing the pursuit gap significantly. Brown, with his hands up, says, "Okay, okay, okay. I'm unarmed, don't shoot..." Before Brown can finish his plea, Wilson begins to fire the last four shots that hit Brown.
12:02:22 PM: In just under two seconds shots eight through eleven strike Brown (making the encounter fr
om shots two through eleven mere milliseconds under eight seconds.)
Shots eight and nine (12:02:22 PM) strike Brown's arm/hand while Brown's hands are up. Brown's hands come down and he staggers forward a few feet in the direction of Wilson.
12:02:23 PM: While falling to the ground, Brown cradles his arms close to him as Wilson fires shot ten (12:02:23 PM) into his eye and shot eleven (possible fatal bullet fired at 12:02:23 PM) into the top of his head.
12:02:25 PM: Brown is dead on Canfield Drive—over 108 feet away from Wilson's SUV. The time from the confrontation at the SUV to Brown's death takes just about one minute.
(Vincent Heck was a key contributor to this report.)
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