Premise behind the protests in Ferguson now in jeopardy.
The official autopsy on Michael Brown, the teen killed by Ferguson police office Darren Wilson on August 9, shows that Brown was shot at close range during “a significant altercation at the car.”
Documents prepared by the St. Louis County medical examiner and obtained by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reveal Brown was within inches of Wilson when shot.
A microscopic examination of tissue from a thumb wound revealed foreign matter “consistent with products that are discharged from the barrel of a firearm,” according to the newspaper.
Forensics tests performed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation reached a similar conclusion.
The FBI and Obama’s Justice Department have refused to comment on the findings and the St. Louis County Police Department’s assertion Wilson was “pushed back into the car” by Brown and “physically assaulted.”
The results of the county autopsy conform with one arranged by the Brown family.
Attorney General Eric Holder ordered a third autopsy and results released by military coroners to federal authorities showed that Brown was shot six times.
The St. Louis County autopsy “supports the fact that this guy is reaching for the gun, if he has gunpowder particulate material in the wound,” said Dr. Judy Melinek, a forensic pathologist in San Francisco.
“If he has his hand near the gun when it goes off, he’s going for the officer’s gun,” she added.
In addition to gun powder residue, Brown’s blood was discovered on Wilson’s firearm.
The autopsy results conflict with eye witness testimony stating Brown was shot while running away or surrendering with his hands up.
Melinke said Brown was facing Wilson when he was shot. He took a fatal shot to the forehead, two shots to the chest and a shot to the upper right arm. The forensic pathologist said the wound to Brown’s head shows he was falling forward or lunging for Wilson.
Despite the autopsy results, demonstrators in Ferguson, Missouri are calling for the arrest and prosecution of Wilson. Protests are anticipated if a grand jury decides to acquit the police officer.
“It’s going to be a war because they’re not going to indict him,” a protester told The Huffington Post on Tuesday.
On Monday a Missouri state senator, Jamilah Nasheed, was arrested in Ferguson. Police said she was blocking traffic by kneeling in the middle of the road while performing the “hands up, don’t shoot” pose. Police said she was intoxicated and in possession of a handgun.
Protests in Ferguson and around the country in the wake of the Brown shooting have focused attention on police brutality and militarization.
Protest participation and media attention have tapered off over the last two weeks.
On Wednesday Rich Lowry, writing for The Missoulian, declared the protests have entered “their late, decadent phase of self-indulgent triviality” despite the recent arrest of socialist Cornel West and a promise by Al Sharpton to head “back to Ferguson at the end of the month to pump up attention for what styles itself a movement, although it is more tinny by the day.”