For the first time since the incident between Officer Darren Wilson and Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., Wilson appeared in an interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos to tell his account of the altercation with Michael Brown on Aug. 9. The grand jury did not indict the officer, nor gave any punishments. Wilson has resigned from Ferguson police for the safety of his fellow officers and the rest of the community.
Before this interview, individuals had minimal knowledge about Wilson except for the fact that the incident shook up the community of Ferguson and the world. He had been off the radar and was not allowed to talk to anyone about the situation until the jury. In his interview, Wilson describes himself as a “simple man” and that he was just doing his job during the incident.
“I just did my job. I did what I was paid to do,” said Wilson. “I followed my training, the training took over.” His fight-or-flight reaction kicked into gear. “Training led me to what happened. I maintained the integrity of the investigation. That’s it.”
Since the decision of the grand jury, Ferguson has been rioting all over again. The community does not believe justice was served. Protests have been taking place around the globe; the infamous line “hands up, don’t shoot” has been channeled through these protests. The nation has been divided with the decision of not indicting Wilson or giving him any sort of punishment.
Wilson claims to have been fighting for his life, but only had minor injuries, while Brown suffered from nine gunshot wounds including a fatal blow to the head.
“All I wanted to do is live,” said Wilson about his confrontation with Brown.
Could Wilson have taken a different course of action? In his interview, he compared and contrasted the various methods he could have used within those 90 seconds of him and Brown battling for the gun. Why did he not use mace? Was it necessary to use that kind of excess force against Brown? Would a couple of bullets have stopped him? These are questions the public wants clear answers to. Wilson said there is nothing he would have done differently, but wished Brown had complied with his commands to have avoided the situation.
Although such an unfortunate incident, this has motivated police departments to require officers to continuously wear a camera on their uniform. This will help minimize misapprehensions and give a first-hand eyewitness of any altercation exchanged between civilians and cops. In this case, most of the witnesses had extremely different stories from Wilson’s, which caused confusion with media outlets. The only people who know first-hand what happened are Brown and Wilson. Unfortunately, Brown never had the opportunity to tell his side of the story, but protestors are speaking loudly for his justice.