March 4th, 2015
Department of Justice Report Finds Pervasive Racial Bias in Ferguson Police Department; Files No Charges Against Former Officer Darren Wilson
On March 4, 2015, the Department of Justice released a comprehensive investigative report looking into police behaviors and practices within the Ferguson Police Department in Missouri. The report was in response to the shooting death of Michael Brown by former Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson. Brown’s death was heavily publicized in the media.
The DOJ report documented rampant and pervasive racial bias within the Ferguson Police Department. The report found a patterned practice of discriminatory policing in which African Americans made up 90 percent of arrests despite only being 67 percent of the town’s population. Further, over 150 community complaints regarding excessive use of force had been filed over the course of four years for which no disciplinary action had been taken.
These findings shed light on the environment in which Michael Brown was harassed and ultimately killed by Darren Wilson, just day’s after Michael’s high school graduation. Wilson was never prosecuted for the shooting.