News that Michael Brown was a robbery suspect could put a fresh light on his killing by a Ferguson police officer, says the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “A police officer making a stop of just a couple of guys walking down the street is very different from an officer stopping a couple of guys who just committed a robbery,” said David Klinger, a criminal justice professor at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. The circumstances faced by Officer Darren Wilson contained both elements.
Police Chief Tom Jackson said Wilson was aware there had been a robbery involving cigars but did not realize when he ordered two young men to stop walking in the street that they were suspects. Wilson made the connection when he noticed cigars in Brown's hand, Jackson said. The chief released police reports and surveillance pictures in saying Brown, 18, had been involved in the store robbery and roughed up a clerk. Wilson shot Brown, who was unarmed. The shooting remains under investigation by the St. Louis County police and the FBI. The shooting spurred nights of protests — some violent — and cries for justice from Brown's family and others who accuse police of murdering a man who posed no threat.