Ferguson shooting: No indictment for police officer in Michael Brown shooting

Michael Brown, an 18-year-old high school graduate planning to go to technical college, was shot at least six times by policeman Darren Wilson. (EPA/TANNEN MAURY)

A US police officer who shot an unarmed teenager won't face any charges.

A grand jury in the US state of Missouri has ruled that a white policeman who shot dead an African-American teenager will not be charged.

Michael Brown, an 18-year-old high school graduate, was shot at least six times by Darren Wilson, 28, in the community of Ferguson, just outside of St Louis, Missouri.

Prosecuting Attorney Robert McCulloch told reporters that a grand jury had reviewed the evidence gathered about the August shooting and "determined that no probable cause exists to file any charge against Officer Wilson."

He said some eyewitness accounts were not substantiated by the findings of an autopsy into Brown's death.

"Eyewitness accounts must always be challenged and compared against the physical evidence,", Mr McCulloch said.

"Many witnesses to the shooting of Michael Brown made statements inconsistent with other statements they made and also conflicting with the physical evidence. Some were completely refuted by the physical evidence."

The Brown family said in a statement they are profoundly disappointed by the outcome and called for calm.

"We are profoundly disappointed that the killer of our child will not face the consequence of his actions," the statement read.

"While we understand that many others share our pain, we ask that you channel your frustration in ways that will make a positive change."

The grand jury of nine white and three black members had been meeting weekly since August 20 to consider evidence.

The shooting sparked weeks of sometimes violent protests and a nationwide debate about police tactics and race relations.

US President Barack Obama has echoed the Brown family's call for peaceful protests following the decision by the grand jury. 

"Hurting others and destroying property is not the answer", he told a media conference shortly after the announcement that no charges would be laid in the shooting case.

"I join Michael (Brown)'s parents in asking anyone who protests this decision to do so peacefully."

"I also appeal to the law enforcement officials in Ferguson and the region to show care and restraint in managing peaceful protests that may occur."



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