McCulloch, Ferguson Market attorney: Surveillance video in docum - KMOV.com

McCulloch, Ferguson Market attorney: Surveillance video in documentary selectively edited

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Still from surveillance video of Michael Brown inside Ferguson Market (Credit: Police) Still from surveillance video of Michael Brown inside Ferguson Market (Credit: Police)

FERGUSON, Mo. (KMOV.com) – St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Bob McCulloch held a press conference Monday regarding surveillance video from the Ferguson Market and Liquor Store that was seen in a documentary that was released over the weekend.

At the South by Southwest Festival in Austin, Texas, a documentary titled “Stranger Fruit” debuted that focused on the fatal shooting on Michael Brown on August 9, 2014.

In the documentary, there is a clip of surveillance video showing Brown in the Ferguson Market 11 hours before he was accused of robbing it. Filmmaker Jason Pollock suggests Brown, 18, didn’t rob the store but was instead involved in a drug deal with the clerks.

Brown's mother, Lezley McSpadden, said what some claim to be a robbery was just a misunderstanding.

McCulloch said the piece of video shown in the documentary is not the entire video. His office later released the complete video on Monday.

“Over the weekend, there was a pretty pathetic attempt of a video production regarding the fatal shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson that was released at a fair somewhere in Texas,” McCulloch said. “Contained in that was a very poorly edited snippet of a security video taken from the store in Ferguson, shortly before, about 12 hours before Michael Brown returned to the store and shortly before he was shot.”

Jay Kanzler, an attorney for Ferguson Market, agreed with that  assessment at a press conference a few hours later.

During the press conference, McCulloch said officials received a search warrant for the surveillance video after store employees told police Brown attempted to steal items.

McCulloch claims the video shows Brown getting out of a car and entering the store around midnight. Once he is inside the store, Brown is seen going to the cooler and grabbing a couple of drinks, then going to the counter and asking for a couple boxes of cigarillos. McCulloch said Brown is then seen placing the items in a bag and placing another bag on the counter.

“There’s no audio, so I have no way of knowing what he put down on the table,” said McCulloch. Kanzler said marijuana was believed to be in Brown's hand.

While the video does not have sound, McCulloch said Brown and the store employees are seen having a discussion while the clerks are examining what is on the counter. Brown is then seen trying to walk out the door, but one of the employees calls out to him.

Kanzler said the employee was not willing to trade with Brown and asked why he was leaving without paying. At which time, he turns around and places the bag back on the counter and continues a discussion with the clerks, before taking something off the counter and walking out of the store.

McCulloch said the complete video shows the store employees putting the cigarillos back on the shelf and the drinks back in the cooler after Brown left the store.

During the press conference, McCulloch said the surveillance video was not new information and was mentioned in the report that was released on November 24, 2014, the night the grand jury returned its decision not to indict Darren Wilson.

“It’s certainly not new to anyone, the material is not relevant to anything that occurred later in the day,” McCulloch said.

Kanzler said the full security footage was given to the Brown family's attorneys.

Kanzler added he believes Pollock edited the surveillance video to garner fame for himself, even saying Pollock may be wanting a lawsuit to generate more publicity.

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