RACE

Dorian Johnson: After Being Shot, Mike Brown Said “Keep Runnin’, Bro”

RACE
Dec 15, 2014 at 7:26 AM ET

More than two weeks after the grand jury decision not to indict Darren Wilson in the shooting death of Michael Brown, St. Louis County Prosecutor Robert McCulloch released the transcript of a police interview with Brown’s friend Dorian Johnson, who was with Brown at the time of the incident. In the Aug. 13 interview, released for public viewing Friday, Johnson paints a vivid picture of the fear he claims the two young men experienced as Wilson allegedly chased them down the street. By far, the most telling part of Johnson’s testimony is a reported quote by Brown that, if true, casts a different light on what may have happened.

According to Johnson, after Wilson shot Brown the first time, Johnson could see blood spatter on the teenager’s shirt. Johnson told police that he and Brown then ran as fast as they could to escape Wilson. During the chase, Johnson crouched down between two cars for cover while Brown continued running toward his home. Johnson claims that when Brown passed him, he told the 22-year-old, “Keep runnin’, bro.”

If this testimony reflects reality, it means that despite the fact that he had already been shot, Brown was still concerned about the safety of his friend. This adds a new dimension to Wilson’s portrait of Brown that day, including Wilson’s comment that Brown looked like “a demon” moments before the officer shot him in what he called an act of self-defense.

Johnson alleges that Brown’s last words were not to him but to Wilson. According to Johnson, who was later deposed for the grand jury, Brown tried to tell Wilson he was unarmed but was cut short by four bullets.

Johnson’s testimony is part of a batch of almost two dozen documents McCulloch released Friday having to do with the investigation into Brown’s death. In a statement accompanying Friday’s document dump, McCulloch said that he had “inadvertently omitted a number of witness interviews and a few other documents which had been presented to the grand jury.” Some legal experts have blasted McCulloch’s handling of the prosecution case and his subsequent release of pertinent documents.

Examinations found Johnson’s two accounts, which were given 28 days apart, were mostly consistent.