Even without releasing a name, Everly said the police department could help accommodate some of the protesters' requests for more details and give a clear timeline for when the name will be made public. If they stonewall, he said the situation is more likely to escalate as protesters become increasingly frustrated.
“People are going to fixate on things. This is where leadership needs to understand human dynamics,” said Everly. “They will fill in their own blanks. They will fixate on that in the absence of any evidence to the contrary.”
In a press conference today, Gov. Jay Nixon called the release of the officer’s name “an important milestone” in the investigation and said there are “methods and abilities” to do it safely.
Benjamin Crump, an attorney representing Michael Brown’s parents, said the lack of information was affecting confidence in the police force.
"This doesn't give the community confidence,” he said a press conference Tuesday. “It doesn't illustrate transparence or convince the community that the police aren't going to sweep this under the rug.”