REP. CONYERS STATEMENT ON TRAGIC EVENTS IN FERGUSON, MISSOURI
DETROIT – U.S. Congressman John Conyers Jr. (MI-13) released the following statement in response to ongoing events in Ferguson, Missouri:
“A few facts are clear: A young, unarmed man was shot by a police officer. A small town is under what is essentially martial law. Tear gas and rubber bullets are being used against everyday citizens. Serious and sweeping civil rights violations may have taken place in Ferguson, Missouri.
The tragic killing of 18-year-old Michael Brown and the events that have transpired since the shooting in Ferguson are reminiscent of the violent altercations that took place during the Civil Rights Movement. Countless African Americans endured unwarranted hostility and excessive force from law enforcement while exercising their right to peaceful assembly and civil resistance.
It is a great travesty to find ourselves again witnessing the blatant violation of our right to peaceably assemble in Ferguson. As documented by journalists and people on the ground in Ferguson over the last week, state and local law enforcement have grossly mismanaged any attempts to peaceably resolve the situation. Earlier this week, my colleagues and I issued a letter to the Department of Justice asking them to consider expanding the scope of federal involvement and to investigate the legal and civil rights ramifications of the shooting and surrounding circumstances.
Removal of the St. Louis County Police Department from any involvement in the policing of Ferguson is an important step towards restoring peace and allowing for an independent, thorough investigation to take place. The people of Ferguson deserve nothing less.”