A Missouri grand jury has decided not to indict Police Officer Darren Wilson for the Aug. 9 shooting of unarmed Ferguson teenager Michael Brown, St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Robert McCulloch said tonight.
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McCulloch said that the grand jurors ruled that "no probable cause exists" to indict Wilson on any of the five possible charges that they were asked to consider. He said that the jury was "presented with five indictments" ranging from "murder in the first degree to involuntary manslaughter."
The prosecutor repeatedly stressed the physical evidence that the 12 jurors considered, saying that it "tells the accurate and tragic story of what happened."
"All 12 jurors were present for every session and all 12 jurors examined every piece of evidence," MuCulloch said, adding that the jurors are "the only people who have heard and examined every witness."
McCulloch went on to detail the events of Aug. 9, laying out the most explicit and detailed account of events given by a government or law enforcement official in this case. He noted that one witness inadvertently made an audio recording of the final 10 shots fired by Wilson during the fatal stand off, and the medical examiner was unable to determine the order of the shots.
Michael Brown's family released a statement reacting to the news and calling for people to keep their protests peaceful in spite of the outcome.
"We are profoundly disappointed that the killer of our child will not face the consequence of his actions," they said in the statement.
Wilson's legal defense team also issued a statement about the decision.
"Law enforcement personnel must frequently make split-second and difficult decisions. Officer Wilson followed his training and followed the law," the defense team said. "We recognize that many people will want to second-guess the grand jury's decision. We would encourage anyone who wants to express an opinion do so in a respectful and peaceful manner."