In February 2013—over a year before he killed Michael Brown—Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson arrested Christopher A. Brooks for marijuana possession, a case for which he was given an official commendation. Unsurprisingly, at a preliminary court hearing in Brooks' case yesterday, Wilson was a no-show.
Wilson has not appeared in public since Brown's killing, and it seems unlikely that he will show up for future court dates, raising questions about what will happen to other cases while he remains in hiding. According to a spokesman for the St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney, the Brooks case will not proceed without his testimony.
In the report of the Feb. 2, 2013, arrest, Wilson wrote he had received a call about a suspicious vehicle that may have been involved in a drug transaction. When he arrived, the two men in the PT Cruiser got out. Wilson claimed he smelled marijuana. He talked to both Brooks and Erik C. Johnson, 28, of unincorporated west St. Louis County, and handcuffed the two men together. But when he asked for Brooks' keys so he could search the car, Brooks refused, saying he didn't "want to get into trouble," the report says.
Wilson tried to grab the keys, which were in the front pocket of Brooks' hooded sweatshirt, and Brooks slapped his hand away, the report says. The men struggled for the keys until Wilson got them.
Wilson wrote that he eventually restrained Brooks after a scuffle and found several ounces of pot and 10 pills in the PT Cruiser. Brooks, however, posted a different version of the events on Facebook:
Brooks declined to comment after Monday's hearing, but he has been anticipating a dismissal since last month, when he predicted in a Facebook post that the charges would be dropped. He also claimed Wilson "beat my ass in my front yard while I was handcuffed then gave me 6 felonies."
Brooks also said that he had been "at war" with Ferguson and Dellwood police "since I moved to the county." The post was later deleted but not before being shared on social media.
The Brooks case will be taken in front of a grand jury, the Post-Dispatch reports, though not the one that is investigating Michael Brown's death. Nick Zotos, Brooks' lawyer, told the Post-Dispatch he had been "assured" by Wilson's lawyers that Wilson will not testify in front of that jury or in any other case this year.
[Image via AP]