When Ferguson police released video footage of teenager Michael Brown allegedly robbing a convenience store shortly before he was killed by a police officer, they did so against the objections of the U.S. Department of Justice.
County police had planned to release the video on Thursday, but were instructed not to by the DOJ, over concerns that the video would increase tensions in the community, a law enforcement official told CNN Saturday.
Police released the video on Friday at the same time it was announced that officer Darren Wilson shot down Mr. Brown.
During a press conference on Friday morning, Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson said that Mr. Brown was the “primary suspect” in the robbery and that Mr. Wilson had been responding to the alert when he encountered Mr. Brown. At a conference on Friday afternoon, Mr. Jackson then added that Mr. Wilson was not aware of the robbery when he shot Mr. Brown, and that he initially engaged the teenager because he was walking down the street blocking traffic.
Riots began in the St. Louis suburb on Monday after the weekend shooting. Police used tear gas and rubber bullets on protesters and journalists.