Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson resigns

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Now that a Missouri grand jury has decided not to indict Officer Darren Wilson, what will happen to the man who killed an unarmed teen in the line of duty?

Technically, the 28-year-old officer could have returned to his job at the Ferguson Police Department. But many believe he will never work as a cop again.

On Saturday, Wilson resigned from the force, his attorney confirmed to CNN.

The eight-year police veteran wrote in his resignation letter he was leaving to help protect his fellow officers and Ferguson residents.

“It is my hope that my resignation will allow the community to heal,” he wrote in the letter, provided by his attorney.

“It would be senseless for him to go back to Ferguson,” CNN legal analyst Mark O’Mara said. “And I don’t even think he can go back to law enforcement, for the same reason. He is still now going to carry with him this mantle that he was the cop who killed the young black kid that sparked the controversy nationwide.”

Most people believe Wilson will never again wear a badge.

“If I’m the mayor of Ferguson, believe me, you would want that cop out because you know that he will be controversial,” CNN legal analyst Paul Callan said. “He will be distrusted by the citizenry and maybe subjected to abuse when he’s out on the street. It’s just going to be nothing but trouble.”

More investigations

Wilson is still the subject of an internal investigation by the Ferguson Police Department over what happened on August 9, the day he fatally shot unarmed teenager Michael Brown.

And the U.S. Justice Department is conducting two civil rights investigations: one into whether Wilson, who is white, violated Brown’s civil rights, and the other into the police department’s overall track record with minorities.

O’Mara says he believes the federal investigation into Wilson’s actions will lose steam.

“A federal investigation for civil rights violation is very difficult to accomplish,” he said. “You really have to show that the person acted with the intent to take away your civil rights, meaning I did what I did because you’re black. That’s a protected class.”

The decision to open a federal probe of the Ferguson shooting was largely political, he said.

Since the grand jury declined to indict Wilson, one could conclude that the shooting was justified based upon Wilson’s and Brown’s actions.

“That’s more evidence that he acted in self-defense,” O’Mara said.

‘More stringent’ federal probe possible

Callan said the lack of an indictment could push the federal government to “open a much more stringent and powerful investigation” of Brown’s shooting.

“Now they know he’s not going to be prosecuted on a state level, and the feds have a right to do a completely independent investigation, and they’re not bound in any way by grand jury determination,” he said.

Whether the Justice Department brings charges, however, is another story.

“As a general rule, the feds really only get involved when they have a really strong case.” Callan said. “I wouldn’t imagine they’re going to swoop in on this one too quickly.”

Wrongful death lawsuit possible

Brown’s family will probably file a wrongful death lawsuit against Wilson and the Ferguson Police Department, Callan and O’Mara said.

The Browns recently hired famed pathologist Michael Baden to conduct a second autopsy of Brown’s body, which Callan says is a move presumably “to support a civil lawsuit for money damages later.”

“They’re going to sue a lot of people, and there’s no reason not to,” O’Mara added.

Callan said Brown’s family could file a lawsuit against Wilson and the police department under Section 1983 of Title 42 of the U.S. Code — a federal statute that permits damages against state officials for violations of legal or constitutional rights.

But, O’Mara points out, law enforcement officers are afforded certain legal protections.

“We strap guns on them and say, ‘Go out there and put yourself in danger,’ ” he said. “So they even have an extra level of immunity of sorts. … Overall, Wilson probably acted within the confines of what he’s supposed to do.”

But Wilson will forever be connected to this divisive case that sparked weeks of unrest in the St. Louis suburb.

“Darren Wilson is going to have a tough time because even if the presumption was he did nothing wrong, that doesn’t matter. He is now the focus point for all the anger and animosity that exist in the black community.”

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12 comments

  • Ismael

    Mr. Wilson I hope You find a good job wherever You may end up. You took out the thrash and now You have to go into hiding. Next time learn from the people from Chicago’s south side, die yourself black, come out at night and You will not have any problems. When it is black on black there are no problems. How many in Chicago get caught? How many protests or riots? It is the perfect place to get away with murder.

    • Zebra Stripes

      Killing an unarmed black person does seem to be allowed by many police forces, but Chicago does tend to go after the shooters.

  • Zebra Stripes

    Why not, I’m sure some skinhead police force offered him more money for having the guts to murder an unarmed black guy. Like Mad Dog Zimmerman he will have to lay low for a while, but that will give him time to turn another wife into an ex-wife.

    • NWO

      It’s too bad the police and National Guard had their hands tied, they should have shot everyone of those monkey looters and protesters.

  • Al

    For those who commit crimes, You either go to jail or get shot. Your choice. Storekeep: working, Police officer: working. Michael Brown: stealing and assult. Case closed.

  • Cathyr

    Darren good luck to you and your family. We have all stood by and watched this process and have supported you. No police officer should have to go through what you went through – just remember despite the few protestirs the vast majority of the country supports the decision not to indict (80 percent give or take) and that being said hope you are able to regroup and have a normal life and live your dream — there are other deep seated troubles of the rioters that they have merely scapegoated through you – but to most of us this transparent — Good luck and God Bless Darren Wilson.

    • silent_screamer

      Officer Wilson~
      I’m sorry that moments after the verdict was read to the media, a local Chicagoan who works for New York Times , Julie Bosman, decided to publish your home address in the New York Times. I would like to write her and tell her just what I think of her and her publisher. Its sad to think while folks were gearing up for riots, business looting, car burning and just destroying Ferguson. This irresponsible woman had no regard for you or your family’s safety.
      Julie Bosman
      620 N WAYNE AVE APT 2
      CHICAGO, IL 60660-4204

      • Ismael

        I support law enforcement officers. I have relatives working for the CPD. I support Darren Wilson and I do not support criminals and savages who take advantage of situations like this. This is to Zebra—make a correction an unarmed criminal who charged a peace officer. I hope this woman gets death threats like Darren Wilson did. It was no mistake She did it on purpose. I bet You She is black.

  • Lashonda joness

    Mr Wilson I’m sorry for you having to resign. But it was the right thing to do for your safety. I feel if you went back to work you would have been murdered by the savages in the community. Best of luck to you
    Zebra. Stfu. You make all black people look stupid .

    I hope that reporter Julie gets all kinds of bs sent her way for being a dumb fool for giving his address out
    To tall. Take the blinders off. And realize the criminal mike brown. Made a stupid mistake by charging and assaulting a police officer there are consequences to your action