A St. Louis County grand jury met for 25 days over three months and heard more than 70 hours of testimony from about 60 witnesses — many of whom gave conflicting statements — before deciding not to indict Ferguson police Officer Darren Wilson in the fatal shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown, according to prosecutor Bob McCulloch.
Here are some of the highlights from the testimony, released by McCulloch’s office Monday night:
A PUNCH TO THE FACE
Wilson told the grand jury that he initially encountered Brown and a friend walking in a street and told them to move to the sidewalk, drawing an expletive from Brown. Wilson said he noticed that Brown had a handful of cigars, “and that’s when it clicked for me” that the men were suspects in a theft at a convenience store reported minutes earlier.
Wilson said he asked a dispatcher to send additional officers, then backed his vehicle in front of Brown and his friend. As he tried to open the door, Wilson said, Brown slammed it back shut. Wilson said he pushed Brown with the door and Brown hit him in the face. Wilson told grand jurors he was thinking: “What do I do not to get beaten inside my car?”
Wilson said he drew his gun and threatened to shoot if Brown didn’t move back, fearing another punch to the face could “knock me out or worse.”
“He immediately grabs my gun and says, ‘You are too much of a pussy to shoot me,'” Wilson said, saying he thought he would be shot when Brown dug the gun into the officer’s hip.