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Tuesday 23rd September 2014
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Ferguson Police To Be Investigated By US

Thursday, 4th September 2014 11:29

The Justice Department plans to open an investigation into the practices of the Ferguson police following the shooting of an unarmed black teen by a white officer.

The death of 18-year-old Michael Brown sparked weeks of protests in the Missouri town and rekindled a debate about race in America.

The wide-ranging investigation will look at the overall practices of the police department, including patterns of stops, arrests and use of force, as well as the training the officers receive, the AP news agency said.

The Justice Department is already looking into the specific incident that led to the shooting death of Mr Brown by Officer Darren Wilson on August 9.

Police have said the shooting followed a scuffle that broke out after Mr Wilson told Mr Brown and a friend to move out of the street and onto a sidewalk.

Police say Mr Wilson was pushed into his squad car and physically assaulted.

Some witnesses have reported seeing Mr Brown's arms up in the air before the shooting, in an act of surrender.

An autopsy paid for by the teen's family concluded that he was shot six times, twice in the head.

Separately, it has emerged that Mr Brown did not face any juvenile charges at the time of his death and was never convicted of a serious felony such as murder, robbery or burglary.

Police have said Mr Brown had no adult criminal record.

The details emerged at a hearing in which two media organisations sought the release of any possible juvenile records for Mr Brown.

Juvenile records are confidential in Missouri, but the news organisations claimed that knowing his background was a matter of public interest.