Video footage of demonstrators scuffling outside the Ferguson Police Department the night two officers were shot could hold a key to a case that’s already spurring charges of police brutality and a coerced confession.
And it virtually proves those charges are lies.
One video was part a package broadcast the morning of the March 12 shootings by Fox 2News in St. Louis. In it, a man who resembles accused gunman Jeffry Williams is shown on the losing end of a confrontation with a much larger demonstrator.
The second video, culled from YouTube by the news aggregation site WeaselZippers.com, gives a much clearer view of the smaller man.
The improved view almost certainly matches the police mugshot of Williams taken after his arrest.
Williams’ attorney Jerryl T. Christmas cited the marks on his face as part of his claims that his client was beaten by Ferguson police officers into confessing to the shootings after his arrest Sunday.
“He had bruising … you see the redness on the right side of his face,” attorney Jerryl T. Christmas told Yahoo News. “I don’t see how they are denying it, it’s right there on their own mug shot.”
Well, nobody’s denying Williams had injuries to his face. But how they got there is the question. And these videos – if that is Williams – pretty well answer it.
Also, if that is Williams in the video, he was telling the truth when he told police he’d been in a dispute earlier. If he was the gunman, it would also mean he might have been telling the truth when he said he didn’t intend to hit the wounded police officers. (His next attorney will probably be saying that.)
It would also make it increasingly difficult to believe the protesters’ denials that Williams was someone they didn’t know. As WeaselZippers pointed out, there were numerous witnesses to the fight, not least of them the guy who threw the punch.
Yet none have come forward. Either it’s not Williams in the video and they’re all telling the truth.
Or it is him — and they’re still getting their stories straight.
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