Dorian Johnson, witness to Michael Brown’s shooting arrested

Dorian Johnson, witness to the shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown Jr. (AFP Photo/Michael B. Thomas)
The friend who was with Michael Brown when he was shot dead by police officer Darren Wilson in Ferguson in August last year has been arrested by police.

Johnson was arrested on suspicion of drug posession and has been taken into custody with charges expected to be filed Thursday.

According to police three men were arrested after officers were called to 5700 block of Acme Avenue at 3:21 pm Wednesday after someone reported that the subjects were possibly armed.

A police source who spoke to the St Louis Post Dispatch on condition of anonymity said that the incident involved Johnson and two of his brothers and that Johnson allegedly had some cough medicine on him mixed with an illegal narcotic which he threw to the ground when he was approached by officers.

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One of the three men who the police do not specifically identify as Johnson but who discarded narcotics on the ground also shouted at one of the officers in an attempt to stop them arresting one of the other men who the police thought may have been armed.

The police source also said that one of Johnson’s brothers was also wanted in Bridgeton for armed robbery and armed criminal action.

The arrest comes just a day after it was announced that Johnson is suing the City of Ferguson, its former – now resigned – police chief and Wilson. Johnson is claiming damages of at least $25,000 and an injunction to stop what he claims are discriminatory police practices in Ferguson.

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He also claims he suffered psychological scars and emotional distress on the day that he was stopped by Wilson.

The August shooting of Brown, a young black man, by Wilson, a white officer, resulted in protests in St Louis and across the US against what many in the African American community see as bias and excessive force by police in dealing with young blacks.

On November 24 a St Louis County Grand Jury decided not to bring any charges against Wilson. The US Department of Justice also did not bring criminal charges against him but released a damning report on the Ferguson Police Department, which led to resignations of the police chief and other officials.

The incident in Ferguson follows a trend of black deaths and shootings in recent years by what many see as jumpy and overzealous police officers.

The recent award winning film Fruitvale Station shows an earlier death of a young black man at the hands of the police, it documents events leading up to the death of Oscar Grant who was shot by police officers near San Francisco in 2009 in unclear circumstances.