Watch Attorney General Eric Holder Detail The Department Of Justice's "Searing" Report On Racist Policing In Ferguson
The city of Ferguson, Missouri has been found to be “a community deeply polarized. A community where deep distrust and hostility often characterize interactions between police and area residents,” said Attorney General Eric Holder at a press conference held earlier this afternoon in Washington. Holder’s 24 minute speech came after the release of the U.S. Justice Department’s 87 page report on the findings of its investigations of alleged racial bias and injustice amongst police officers and officials in Ferguson, the city where last summer unarmed teenager Michael Brown was shot and killed by local officer Darren Wilson.
“Of course, violence is never justified. But seen in this context, amidst a highly toxic environment defined by mistrust and resentment, stoked by years of bad feelings, and spurred by illegal and misguided practices, it’s not difficult to imagine how a single tragic incident set off the city of Ferguson like a powder keg,” Holder said.
Holder identified “racial bias both implicit and explicit” in the Ferguson police department and stressed an undermining of public trust and erosion of law enforcement’s legitimacy in the Missouri town. You can watch Holder’s full speech below, in which he begins by dismissing any possibility that Officer Wilson might be charged via Federal Civil Rights law before moving to the report and its condemnations of the discriminatory police culture that Wilson inhabited. Things especially heat up at around the 4:45 point, when a strange sheeny techno beat intrudes on the video for just a few bars. It’s certainly a glitch, but we’re fine with the idea of a Holder anthem. Every hero needs his theme music. Stay tuned for more coming soon on the fallout from the DoJ report’s findings.