Six weeks after their son was shot six times by the police, the parents of Michael Brown finally received an apology from the Ferguson police chief.
“For any mistakes I have made, I take full responsibility,” Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson said in an online video statement which was uploaded onto Vimeo on Thursday (Sept 25).
“I am truly sorry for the loss of your son,” he added, addressing Brown’s parents.
The college-bound teen was shot at least six times by white police officer Darren Wilson on Aug 9 and his body was left in the street for several hours before it was removed.
“I’m also sorry that it took so long to remove Michael from the street,” Thomas added.
“It was just too long and I’m truly sorry for that. Please know that the investigating officers meant no disrespect,” he said, adding “they were simply trying to do their jobs.”
The tragic incident sparked nightly protests in the small town, igniting a national debate about race relations.
Violence rocked Ferguson – a St. Louis suburb of 21,000 with an African-American majority and an overwhelmingly white police department and town council – prompting Missouri Governor Jay Nixon to briefly call in the National Guard to quell protests.
Some demonstrators complained that police used undue force against peaceful protests, which Thomas apologised for.
“If anyone who was peacefully exercising that right is upset and angry, I feel responsible and I am sorry,” he said.
“I’m also aware of the pain and the feeling of mistrust felt in some of the African-American community towards the police department,” he added.
“It is clear we have much work to do.”
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