Grand Jury Does Not Indict Police Officer Darren Wilson

Decision in Ferguson: Officer who shot and killed Michael Brown is not indicted.
13:26 | 11/25/14

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Transcript for Grand Jury Does Not Indict Police Officer Darren Wilson
Get breaking news it's about a case of a spark so much controversy all over the country. You see the crowds there waiting to hear whether the grand jury in Ferguson Missouri will charge officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of Michael Brown. The decision will be announced by Saint Louis county prosecutor Robert McCullough in just a moment there's a courtroom might there. And of course is case all began on August 9 in Ferguson when Wilson a white officer shot and killed brown. An unarmed black teenager who was involved in the robbery of a nearby convenience store. I'm here with an image of chief legal affairs anchor ever since August 20 this grand jury sifting through the evidence. Right and remembered this grand jury is not deciding innocence or guilt the only question that there answering is is there probable cause to send this case to trial. This is very different than a typical grand jury. In the sense that typically you'd see one or two detectives called in the prosecutor would say thank you very much we would like the following charge and they almost always get. Here the prosecutor presented all of the evidence to the grand jury. Didn't ask for a specific charge leaving it to the grand jury to decide do they want to indict. And if there is no indictment all that Evans he's indicated. Will be released in a public. That's right sounds like this prosecutor is going to release a lot of the information. If not almost all of the information was presented to the grand jury clearly an effort to try to instill a sense of confidence on the part of the public. In the grand jury proceeding -- Granger proceedings are typically totally secret and what are the charge that officer Wilson could face anything from involuntary manslaughter where he could face up to seven years in prison the next one up would be voluntary manslaughter second degree murder the highest one being first degree murder. No one expects that but a whole range of possible charges that the grand jury was consider it. Course this entire community has been braced for the violence we see. The prosecutor is Saint Louis county prosecutor Robert McCullough approaching the podium let's listen. I. Mean thanks for your patients are only did not appear so. I'm I have a statement to. The very beginning here and then we'll we have to do answers questions from within his. First and foremost I would like to again extend my deepest sympathies to the family of Michael Brown. I've said in the past I know. That regardless of the circumstances here they lost a loved one to violence and I know that the pain that accompanies. Such a loss knows no mountains. On August 9 Michael Brown was shot and killed by police officer Darren Wilson. Within minutes various accounts of the accident. Began appearing on social media accounts filled with speculation. And little if any solid accurate information. Almost immediately neighbors began gathering in anger began growing. Because of the various descriptions of what had happened and because of the underlying tension between the police department and the significant part of the neighbors. Saint Louis county police conducted an extensive investigation at the crime scene. At times under very trying circumstances. In erupted at least once by random gunfire. Beginning that day and continuing for the next three months. Along with they along with the agents the Federal Bureau of Investigation at the direction of attorney general Eric Holder. Located numerous individuals and gathered additional evidence and information. Fully aware of the unfounded but growing concern in some parts of our community. That the investigation and review this tragic death might not be full and fair. I decided immediately that all of the physical evidence gathered all people claiming to have witnessed any part or all of the shooting. And any and all other related matters would be presented to the jury. Grand jury of twelve members of this community selected by a judge in May of this year long before this shooting there. I would like to you briefly expand upon the unprecedented cooperation between the local in the federal authorities. When attorney general holder first announced the federal and an investigation just days after the shooting. He pledged that federal investigators would be working with local authorities as closely as possible and every step of the way. And would follow the facts wherever they may take this as general holder and I both pledged. Our separate investigations follow that trail of facts with no preconceived notion of where that journey would take us. Our only goal was that our investigation would be thorough and complete. To give the grand jury the department of justice and ultimately the public all available evidence to make an informed decision. All evidence obtained by federal authorities was immediately shared with Saint Louis county investigators. Likewise all evidence gathered by Saint Louis county police was immediately shared with the federal investigators. Additionally the Department of Justice conducted its own examination of all the physical evidence. And performed as on autopsy. Another autopsy was performed at the request of the brown family and all of this information was also share. Just as importantly all testimony before the Saint Louis county grand jury was immediately provided to the Department of Justice. So although the investigations are separate. Both the local and the federal government have all of the same information and others. Our investigation. And presentation of the evidence to the grand jury in Saint Louis county has been completed. Most significant challenge encountered in this investigation has been the 24 hour news cycle. And its insatiable appetite for something for anything to talk about. Following closely behind with a nonstop rumors on social media. I recognize of course that the lack of accurate detail surrounding the shooting frustrates the media and the general public. And helped breed suspicion among those already distrustful of the system. Yet those closely guarded details especially about the physical evidence give law enforcement yardstick for measuring the truthfulness of witnesses. Eyewitness accounts must always be challenging compared against the physical evidence. Many witnesses to the shooting of Michael Brown made statements in consistent with other statements they made. And also conflicting with the physical evidence. Some are completely refuted by the physical evidence as an example. Before the results of the private autopsy were released. Witness is on social media during interviews with the media and even during questioning by law enforcement. Claim that they saw officer Wilson stand over Michael Brown. And fire many rounds into his back. Others claim that officer Wilson shot mr. brown in the back as mr. brown was running away. However wants the autopsy findings were released showing that Michael Brown had not sustained any warmed to the back of his body. No additional witnesses made such a coin and several witnesses adjusted their stories insult in subsequent states. Some even admitted that they did not witness the event at all but merely repeated what they heard. In the neighborhood or others or assumed had happened. Fortunately for the integrity of our investigation. Almost all initial witness interviews including those of officer Wilson were record. The statements and a testimony of most of the witnesses. Were presented to the grand jury before the autopsy results were released. By the media. And before several media outlets published information and reports that they received from the DC government official. The jurors were therefore prior to the time that releases information going public image and the and what followed. Image in the news cycle. The jurors were able to have already assess the credibility of the witnesses. Including those witnesses you statements and testimony remained consistent. Throughout every interview and were consistent with the physical evidence in this case. My two assistants began presenting to the grand jury on August warning. The evidence was presented an organized and orderly manner the jurors gave us a schedule of when they could me. All twelve jurors were present for every session in all twelve jurors heard every word of testimony and examined every item of evidence. Beginning August 20 and continuing until today the grand jury work tirelessly to examine and reexamine all of the testimony. Other witnesses and all of the physical evidence. They were extremely engaged in the process asking questions of every witness requesting specific witnesses. Requesting specific information. And asking for a certain physical evidence. They met on 25 separate days in the last three months heard more than seventy hours of testimony from about sixty witnesses. And reviewed hours and hours of recordings of media and law enforcement interviews by many of the witnesses who testified. They heard from three medical examiners. And experts on blood DNA toxicology. Firearms and drug analysis. They examined hundreds of photographs some of which they asked be taken. They examined various pieces of physical evidence. They were instructed on the law and presented with five indictments ranging from murder in the first degree to involuntary manslaughter. They're Burton was to determine based upon all of the evidence if probable cause exists to believe that a crime was committed. And I Darren Wilson is the person who committed Akron. There is no question of course that Darren Wilson crossed the death of Michael Brown by shooting him what the inquiry does not end there. The law authorizes a law enforcement officer use deadly force in certain situations. The law also allows all people. To use deadly force to defend themselves in certain situations. For the grand jury considered whether Wilson was the initial aggressor. In this case or whether he was there or whether there was probable cause to believe that Darren Wilson. Was authorized as a law enforcement officer to use deadly force in this situation. Or if he acted in self defense. I. First so that everyone will know that as promised by me and attorney general holder. There was a full investigation and presentation all evidence and appropriate instruction law to the jury to the grander. Second. As a caution to those in and out of the media who will pounce on a single sentence or a single witness. And decide what should have happened in this case based on that tiny bit of the information. The duty of the grand jury is to separate fact from fiction. After a full and impartial in critical examination examination of all the evidence and the law. And decide if that evidence supported the filing of any criminal charges against Darren Wilson. They accepted and completed his monumental responsibility and a conscientious and expeditious manner. Is important to note here and say it again. That they are the only people the only people who have heard and examined every witness and every piece of evidence. They discussed and debated the evidence among themselves before arriving at their collective decisions. After their exhaustive review of the evidence the grand jury deliberated over two days making their final decision. They determined that no probable cause exists to file any charge against officer Wilson. And return to no true bill on each of the five indictments. 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. A very general synopsis of the testimony in the physical evidence presented to the grand jury follows. Please note that as I have promised the evidence presented to the grand jury with some exceptions. And the testimony of the witnesses called to the grand jury will be released at the conclusion of this statement. At approximately 11:45. AM on Saturday the ninth of August 1 and police officer Darren Wilson was just. And there you have it seamless carrier prosecutor Robert McCullough. Saying the grand jury found no probable cause to charge officer Darren Wilson with a climb and nearly Dan Abrams. He said every person on the grand jury went through every piece of evidence listen to every hour of testimony. There jobless separate fact from fiction. And decide whether officer Wilson was doing a job doing his job we're committing a crime. Right and this grand jury decided that there was no crime worth trying remember. This grand jury deciding do we send this to trial for a trial jury. To decide guilt dress it's this grand jury determining there's not even enough evidence to send this case to trying to you heard. The district attorney there. Comparing the eyewitness accounts to the physical evidence wise and important. Because you've got a lot of Michael Brown supporters talking about all of the eyewitness testimony you're the prosecutor they're saying yes there was eyewitness testimony. But it was belied and it was contradicted by the physical and. And we'll see with the reaction is like tonight in the coming days to neighbors thanks very much much more tonight on Nightline get all the latest and This has been a special. For me BC.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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