CLAYTON, Mo. (AP) – After a third review failed to uncover enough evidence to charge the officer who fatally shot Black 18-year-old Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, some prosecutors and civil rights leaders agree it’s time to focus on changing the laws that shield police.
In an interview Friday with The Associated Press, St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Wesley Bell said legislators need to take a hard look at laws that offer protection against prosecution for police officers that regular citizens aren’t afforded, pushing a message that has gained strong momentum in the two months since George Floyd’s death by Minneapolis police launched a national reckoning over racial injustice and police brutality.
“We see those types of laws throughout the country, and it is something that handcuffs prosecutors in numerous ways when you are going about prosecuting officers who have committed unlawful use of force or police shootings,” Bell said.
Bell, St. Louis County’s first Black prosecuting attorney, was