Democratic Missouri Governor Jay Nixon lambasted the Ferguson police department for releasing a video showing teenager Michael Brown robbing a convenience store minutes before being shot by a police, calling it “an attempt to, in essence, disparage the character of this victim.”
On Friday, Ferguson police provided a tape to the media showing Brown — whose killing touched off a firestorm of race riots and police crackdowns — robbing a convenience store just before his death last Saturday.
While the tape was meant to defend the department against accusations that the killing was in cold blood, its release reignited riots that had subsided earlier in the week. And on NBC’s “Meet The Press” on Sunday, the governor expressed his fury.
“We and our security team in the highway patrol did not know that was going to be released, I don’t think the attorney general knew that,” he said. “And quite frankly, we disagree deeply.”
“I think for two reasons,” Nixon explained. “Number one, to attempt to, in essence, disparage the character of this victim in the middle of a process like this is not right. It’s just not right.”
“And secondarily, it did put the community — and quite frankly, the region and the nation — on alert again,” he continued. “These are old wounds. These are deep wounds between — in these communities, and that action was not helpful.”