War of Words Breaks Out Over Michael Brown Footage

No love lost between Robert McCulloch, Jason Pollock
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 14, 2017 4:43 AM CDT
Updated Mar 14, 2017 6:11 AM CDT

Protesters have returned to the streets of Ferguson, Mo., in the wake of a new documentary's claim that Michael Brown didn't rob a store before he was shot dead by police in 2014. On Sunday night, three people were arrested outside Ferguson Market & Liquor for assaulting police officers or trying to light a police car on fire, and shots were fired at a police cruiser, NBC News reports. Monday's protests were peaceful, however, with the dozens of activists gathered outside Ferguson Market offering free candy and cigarettes to try to keep people out of the store. Jason Pollock's documentary Stranger Fruit features previously unseen surveillance footage from hours before the alleged theft and shooting and claims that the 18-year-old Brown didn't steal boxes of cigarillos in a strong-arm robbery but traded them for marijuana in a previously agreed deal.

The store's owners and St. Louis County Prosecutor Robert P. McCulloch have rejected the documentary's claim, with the prosecutor calling the video "pathetic" and "poorly edited," the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports. McCulloch released five surveillance videos from the wee hours of Aug. 9, 2014, and told reporters Monday that the full version of the footage shows "there was certainly an attempt to barter for these goods" on Brown's behalf, but "the store employees had no involvement at all in that. To suggest he’s coming back to get what he bartered for is just stupid.” Pollock's response to the AP: McCulloch is "a master at deception, I'll give him that, and he tricked the world for a long time, but he can't trick us now. Because anybody who sees that video knows exactly what they see." (More Ferguson, Missouri stories.)

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