Testimony For A Dead Man

Darren Wilson
According to the leaked testimony to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch on October 22 the incident began as Wilson was driving down Canfield Drive, having just handled a call about a sick baby, when he saw Brown and Johnson walking down the middle of the street. Wilson told them to move to the sidewalk and was met with verbal abuse from the pair in response. Wilson saw that they were carrying cigarillos and he noticed that Johnson matched the description of a suspect in a strong-arm robbery where cigarillos had been stolen. Wilson parked his vehicle and called for assistance, then tried to get out of the vehicle, but was punched in the face by Brown through the open window. Wilson thought he had no choice but to draw his weapon, because Brown was “incredibly strong”. He was unable to use pepper spray due to the close quarters, and his baton was out of reach. Brown grabbed Wilson’s pistol while punching him repeatedly in the face. Wilson could feel Brown pushing the weapon back toward his body, and it was at one point pointed back at his hip. Wilson pulled back inside the vehicle and attempted to shoot Brown, but he failed the first time because Brown’s finger was jammed in the hammer of the gun. The gun fired on the second attempt, resulting in a wound to Brown’s hand, as well as scattering fragments of glass inside the vehicle. A second gunshot failed to hit Brown before Brown fled. Wilson’s shoulder radio had been knocked off-setting during the struggle, and he decided to give chase. After he got out of the vehicle, Brown turned back toward him, then charged at him despite his commands to stop. Wilson fired at Brown, hitting him four times, including a final, fatal shot to the forehead, which brought Brown down.
Wilson told investigators that he did not recall yelling or saying anything when he was chasing Brown, but when Brown stopped, turned and began running toward him, he yelled stop.[66] According to a source reported in The Washington Post, Wilson testified to the grand jury that he ordered Brown to stop and lower himself to the ground, but Brown instead turned and moved toward the officer.[67] Wilson said that Brown’s hands were not raised at the time of the shooting.[65]

Dead men can’t tell their side of the story, but eyewitnesses can tell what they saw that day.

Dorian Johnson
Dorian Johnson, a friend of Brown, was walking with him in the street. Johnson said that Wilson pulled up beside them and said, “Get the fuck on the sidewalk.”

The young men replied that they were “not but a minute away from their destination, and would shortly be out of the street”. Wilson drove forward without saying anything further, only to abruptly back up, positioning his vehicle crosswise in their path, almost hitting the two men. “We were so close, almost inches away, that when he tried to open his door aggressively, the door ricocheted both off me and Big Mike’s body and closed back on the officer.”

Wilson, still in his vehicle, grabbed Brown around his neck through the open window.[39] Brown tried to pull away, but Wilson continued to pull Brown toward him “like tug of war”.[73] Brown “did not reach for the officer’s weapon at all”, and was attempting to get free of Wilson rather than attack him or take his weapon from him.

Wilson drew his weapon and said, “I’ll shoot you” or “I’m going to shoot”, and almost instantaneously fired his weapon, hitting Brown.

Following the initial gunshot, Brown was able to free himself, at which point the two fled. Wilson exited the vehicle, after which he fired several rounds at the fleeing Brown, hitting him once in the back.

Brown turned around with his hands raised and said, “I don’t have a gun. Stop shooting!” Wilson then shot Brown several more times, killing him.

Johnson’s attorney stated that Wilson did not attempt to resuscitate Brown, did not call for medical help, and “he didn’t call it in that someone had been shot.”

Johnson told local TV stations shortly after the shooting that Brown had been surrendering, when Wilson opened fire without cause or warning.

Johnson’s attorney, Freeman Bosley, stated that Johnson had confirmed with law enforcement his and Brown’s roles in taking the cigars prior to the shooting incident

Piaget Crenshaw

Piaget Crenshaw said that, from her vantage point, it appeared that Wilson and Brown were arm wrestling before the former shot Brown from inside his vehicle. Wilson then chased Brown for about 20 feet before shooting him again. “I saw the police chase him … down the street and shoot him down.” When Brown then raised his arms, the officer shot him two more times, killing him.

Michael Brady

By the time Michael Brady got outside, Brown had turned around and was facing Wilson. Brown was “balled up” with his arms under his stomach and he was “halfway down” to the ground. As he was falling, Brown took one or two steps toward Wilson because he was presumably hit and was stumbling forward; Wilson then shot him three or four times. Brady said that the pictures he took of Brown with his arms tucked in under his body is the position he was in as he was shot three or four more times by Wilson before hitting the ground

Tiffany Mitchell
Tiffany Mitchell arrived in the area to pick up coworker Piaget Crenshaw. In an August 13 televised interview with a local CBS affiliate, Mitchell said she saw Brown and Wilson struggling through the window of Wilson’s vehicle. “The kid was pulling off and the cop was pulling in.” She started to take out her phone to record video, but then she heard a gunshot, “so I just started getting out of the way.” After the first shot was fired, Brown started to run away. “After the shot, the kid just breaks away. The cop follows him, kept shooting, the kid’s body jerked as if he was hit. After his body jerked he turns around, puts his hands up, and the cop continues to walk up on him and continues to shoot until he goes all the way down.”

Mitchell also appeared on CNN that evening, describing what she witnessed as follows: “As I pull onto the side, the kid, he finally gets away, he starts running. As he runs the police get out of his vehicle and he follows behind him, shooting. And the kid’s body jerked as if he was hit from behind, and he turns around and puts his hands up like this, and the cop continued to fire until he just dropped down to the ground and his face just smacks the concrete.
Grand jury witnesses
On October 16, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch published an interview with a black Canfield resident who testified before the grand jury. The man, who did not want his name released, said he saw the entire event. Wilson drove past Johnson and Brown and then backed up again. A scuffle ensued in the police vehicle and Wilson’s hat flew off. There was a gunshot at the vehicle, and then Brown ran down the street followed by Wilson. Wilson aimed his gun at Brown and repeatedly yelled “Stop”, but did not fire until Brown turned around and stepped toward Wilson. At that point Wilson fired three shots. Brown staggered toward Wilson from 20 feet away with his hands out to his sides, when Wilson fired again. The witness said that Brown was already falling as the last shots were fired and that, in his opinion, the final shots were murder.

Tonight helicopters are hovering over the Farragut Projects on the other side of Fort Greene Park. I hear the whoop of sirens. The pigs.

White America

WINTER IN AMERICA by Gil Scott-Heron


Gil Scott-Heron was born three years before me in 1949 The late Chicago-born poet/musician never had a hit, but his line ‘the revolution will not be televised’ survived in my memory and that of Keith Raywood who put WINTER IN AMERICA on his Facebook home page, proving that website is not 100% devoted to old friends prattling about their wasted lives.

To hear WINTER IN AMERICA go to this URL.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kcHOq8i5Pyk&feature=related

When It All Went Bad

The Dream Is Never Over

After spending a lovely night in Houston, JFK and his wife boarded the presidential jet for a short hop to Dallas. The crowds lining the route applauded the president and his hostess, Mrs. Connolly, commented, Dallas loved him and he replied, “That’s very obvious.”

The single bullet and then another struck JFK within a second of his reply.

November 22, 1963 was a bad day, however the video shows that he was having a good time in Texas.

The love was real and real now too.

Johnny Boy we miss you.

To view the lovely night in Houston, please go to this URL

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jQlw-U8l6YY

THE TRUTH AND NOTHING BUT THE TRUTH by Peter Nolan Smith

A black Suburban headed west on Route 2 at the top of Lake Michigan. The late afternoon traffic was light and no state troopers cruised the two-laner traversing the Upper Peninsula. The driver was cruising at 85, then stamped on his brakes upon spotting a white van parked in the Wonderland Diner parking lot. The SUV lumbered to the side of the road and the tall man behind the wheel reached over for his binoculars. He focused on the back of the van.

The plates matched those of the fugitive.

“Now I have you, you bastard.”

Only this morning the Assistant Field Director in Petrowsky called off the hunt for their quarry.

“The fat man has slipped through our net, but someone that size will surface sooner or later.”

The driver of the black car hadn’t imagined ‘later’ would arrive so soon and he punched a number on his cell phone. The direct line to the agency was busy. He tried the State Police without success and then 911 with the same result. Someone jamming the transmissions.

SOP recommended back-up and the agent waited for the phone service to come back on line.

The diner’s sign blinked HOME COOKING every 15 seconds. The neon enticement played to an empty house. Thirty minutes went by without a single car or truck passing the Wonderland Diner.

The sun dropped beneath the pines. The thickening darkness was all the cover that the fat man needed to escape into the Upper Peninsula’s trackless woods. The agent pressed the number for the FBI.

Nothing.

He pulled out his 9mm. It was loaded with 15 rounds.

“Fuck SOP.” The agent shifted the SUV out of park and drove right behind the van. He flicked off the safety of his automatic and exited from the Suburban. Blessing himself with the left hand he walked to the entrance.

The door opened with a creak.

Neither the cook nor the young man at the counter broke from their fixation on the food fest at table #5, where a fat man in overalls shoveled down the remains of grits and eggs.

“Where them pasties?”

The fat man pushed his stubby fingers through lank hair.

“They’re coming.”

Michigan had no law against eating yourself to death and the cook flipped the half-dozen meat-stuffed pasties onto a plate, then turned to the tall man at the door.

His suit was rumpled and his right hand was behind his back. His build was a little too athletic for a man in his forties, but the cook had seen all types during his ten years running the Wonderland.

“You comin’ or goin’? Cuz either way you gotta shut that door.”

“Business so good you can insult customers.”

The newcomer shut the door.

“Sorry, mister, I don’t heat the great outdoors. Not this time of year.”

The tall man sat at the counter.

“What’s good?”

“Most everythin’.”

The fat man wiped his mouth with the back on his hand.

“Chicken pot pie was damn good. Pork Chops too. Ya should try that.”

“I’m not that hungry.”

The tall man eyed the young man at the counter. The dirt on his hands had not come from any honest labor and the leaves in his long hair indicated a night under a bridge. He was no one and the tall man whipped out his 9mm.

“Don’t shoot me.” The cook dropped the plate of pasties.

“No one’s shooting anyone.” The fat man poked a fork into the flapjacks.

“Not if I don’t have to.” The tall man produced a badge with his left hand. “I’m a duly authorized federal agent and that man is a fugitive from justice. You two stay out of the way and nobody will be hurt. Big man, keep your hands in front of you and stand away from the table very slowly.”

“I….” the hippie stammered and the agent snapped,” This doesn’t concern you.”

“Stay out of it,” the fat man mumbled through his pancakes.

“Drop that fork.”

The agent approached the booth.

“Ya goin’ to shoot me for eatin’?”

“I’m not kidding.” The agent wasn’t in a laughing mood.

“Damn, who ya’ll? The fat people police?” The big man rose with extraordinary grace for a man his size. His hands were in the air. “Yer wanna arrest me, Ah ain’t gonna fight.”

The fat man was wanted Dead or Alive and his lack of resistance surprised the agent.

“You’ve been through the drill; turn around, face the wall, and spread them wide.”

“Tell me, if Ah’m gonna be safe with ya’ll.”

The fat man stretched his elephantine arms and legs against the Formica wall.

“Safe?”

“Ah mean, the only reason Ah ain’t surrendered before was that Ah weren’t sure that yer cud keep me someplace safe.”

“Oh, we have safe places for you.” The agent dangled handcuffs to the cook. “Slap these on the man. If he moves, I’ll shoot him.”

“Shootin’ a man that big like trying’ to hit a bear in a vital spot.” The cook took the cuff. “No offense, big man.”

“None taken.” The fat man’s head swiveled to show a toothy smile. “Yer a good cook and Ah gots to dig yer fer that.”

“Keep your eyes straight ahead.”

“Ain’t that a laugh? Here ya’ll trying’ to earn a decent livin’ and this bloodhound starts mess in’ with yer customers and ordering’ ya around.”

The fat man pressed his face to the wall.

“Bet that makes ya feel real safe.”

“Shut up.”

“You wanna know why they after me? Cus Ah’m privy to the truth about lies. Cookie, why don’t ya ask Bossman why he’s arresting’ me? I bet $100 he doesn’t have a clue.”

“They’re too small.” The cook fumbled with the cuffs.

“You have to open them up.” The tall man glanced at the silent longhair. His hands were over his head. The agent snatched the handcuffs from the cook and stepped closer to the fat man. “Get real tight with that wall and put your hands behind you.”

“Yeah, yer just doin’ your job, only Ah ain’t done no wrong to no one in a long time. That didn’t keep ‘em from comin’ after me.”

“Shut up.”

“I’m gonna obey your every command, bossman.”

“Cook, you have tape?” The cuffs were too small.

“Ain’t ya supposed to use government-issue tape?”

“I told you to shut your hole and I meant it. Where’s that tape?”

“Right here.” The cook offered masking tape.

“Wrap his wrists tight.”

“Hey, ya don’t wanna be cuttin’ off the blood. Ah mean Ah gotta eat with these hands.”

“Don’t worry, you’ll be stuffing your yap soon enough.”

The agent waved the cook out of his line of fire.

“I hate GI Joe grub.” The fat man spun on his heels and pushed the cook.

The agent had been expecting this move and pulled the trigger, only the shot went wide and three hundred plus pounds of sweat, fat, and bones squashed the agent into the wall like a Samoan lineman sacking a quarterback. When the fat man stepped away, the unconscious agent fell to the floor.

“You killed him,” the cook declared with horror.

“Ain’t dead, only knocked out and people will come in droves, cus ya had somethin’ happen here. And they’ll all wanna to hear about what happened and not much happens this time of year or any other, right? If fact ya should be thanking’ me for savin’ yer winter.”

“Thanks.”

The fat man de-ammoed the 9mm.

“Cookie, give the man his piece after I’m gone.”

“What you gonna do?” The cook looked at the payphone.

“Ah’m gonna go down the highway and yer can tell the fellas that come for this one that too.”

The fat man picked up the pasties from the floor.

“Sure, take what you want.”

“This ain’t no stick-up.” The fat man handed him several twenties and told the long hair, “You can drop yer hands.”

“I’m no trouble.” The long hair stared at the man on the floor.

“And ya ain’t gonna have none neither. I wany ya ta drive fer me.”

“Drive for you?” The hippie lowered his arms.

“They have an all-points on my van, so Ah’m takin’ the bossman’s car.”

The longhair retreated toward the bathroom.

“Maybe ya didn’t hear me right. You’re drivin’. Ah can’t fit behind the wheel and ya’ll can. Afterwards ya can say that Ah forced ya’ll, which is exactly what Ah’m doin’, ifn’t I hear the word ‘no’ agin.”

“You’re not leaving me any choices,” the longhair protested to the fat man.

“Yer exactly right.” The fat man searched the fallen agent’s pockets, finding the car keys, and then jerked the pay phone from the wall. “Sorry, Ah can’t take chances. Thanks for the lunch. It was delicious. Let’s go.”

The hippie exited first from the diner.

The fat man pointed to the SUV.

“I like big cars. They make me look thin.”

“There’s not many places to run on the Upper Peninsula.”

“That’s okay, cuz where Ah’m goin’ ain’t no one can follow me.”

“You expecting an alien abduction?”

“They already land on Earth. Sum of ‘em tubes. Funny, maybe that’s why people in the fashion businesses are so skinny and Ah’m so fat. They don’t abduct no fat men, cuz they can’t achieve orbit. Now git in the car, we have to go.” The fat man shoved the long hair behind the wheel and then sat in the rear with the SUV teetering to the right.

“Where to?”

“Head west.”

The hippie studied the rear-view mirror with a little too much interest.

“Who’s been chasing you?” The hippie backed out of the parking lot.

“The FBI, the CIA, the NSA and even NASA had a shot.”

“Was that guy one of them?”

“He mighta been after the million-dollar bounty on my head.”

“Why you worth a million?” The hippie glanced in the rearview mirror.

“Yer seen me enough at the diner.”

“I ain’t seen anyone human eat that much.”

“Yer can’t get a better disguise than a fat person.”

“So you didn’t tell me why they hunting you.”

“Ah didn’t, otherwise they’d hunt yer to the ground.”

“Heck, I’m already wanted for credit card theft, so I’m off to Canada, then I’ll head to the Eskimo nation to hunt seals or whales or carve tusks. I’m good with my hands and there’s not much call for that in the old USA, right?”

“Yer wanna hear why they’re after me?” The fat man leaned forward to whisper in the driver’s ear.

“Hell, I’d tell you I’d keep it a secret, but after two beers or a joint I’d surrender the family secrets to entertain the crowd, so if you don’t want it spread around the Eskimo nation, keep it to yourself.”

The driver’s gray eyes gleamed with a hustler’s sincerity.

“I guess I can trust you.” The fat man settled into the seat. “Ah was once young and full of life. One day Ah heard a story, which altered my life. A secret Ah wuzn’t supposed to hear and didn’t believe. Anyway this man told me the truth of this world. Oh, Ah heard why we were in Vietnam to stop communism. More like to control the heroin trade. Why we gave China to the Reds? To control one billion people under one leader. The government waved the flag and blacklisted commies in America, which was smoke fer the real drama. None of those truths got me in trouble. No, the one that endangered me is the greatest mystery in the American Century. Yer have any idea which one that might be?”

“Is Elvis alive?”

“Elvis is dead. Ah saw the body.”

“You saw the body?” the longhair demanded in disbelief.

“Ah saw plenty in my old job and heard more. Elvis’s death ain’t the greatest secret in America, unless yer an Elvis impersonator. C’mon, try a little harder.”

He squinted, as the setting sun’s golden glow filled the long corridor of pines bordering the highway.

“Biggest secret. Oh, I have it. Who killed Kennedy? You’re talking about that, right?”

The driver stepped on the gas.

“Ah’ll tell yer and it’ll take about seven minutes after which Ah’m gonna step out of the car and you drive away. Yer got that?”

“Yes.”

“Ah was alive, when Kennedy was killed. Hell, Ah can tell you what Ah was wearin’, cuz Ah went to a Catholic school. White shirt, blue tie, black pants, black shoes. Anyway Ah believed that Oswald was the killer.”

“Same as the rest of the America.”

“Ah believed that, until Ah met the assassin and he wuzn’t no CIA agent either.”

“Who was he?”

“His identity is unimportant, cuz he wuz part of the machine that killed the president.”

“Cause of the Bay of Pigs?”

“Cold.”

“Vietnam?”

“Not even warm. This story doesn’t begin with the Kennedys. Yer heard of Marilyn Monroe?”

“Yeah, the movie actress JFK was banging.”

“That proves yer an ignorant fuck buyin’ what the TV sells you.”

“Okay, okay, tell me your story then.”

The driver flicked on the headlights.

“What yer do that fer?”

“Cause it’ll be dark soon, that’s why.”

“Yeah, right, so as Ah said, the story starts with Marilyn Monroe. Not many people were aware of that she was the illegitimate daughter of a Mafia gangster. Anyway Marilyn becomes a movie star and every citizens in America believes she’s havin’ an affair with JFK, only JFK is usin’ her as a ‘beard’ to hide his womanizin’.”

“With Judith Exner Campbell.”

“Glad you watch The Learning Channel.”

The fat man dropped the southern accent.

The story went faster without the drawl.
“Anyway Marilyn becomes a real pain in the ass and JFK tells his brother, Bobby, to tell her it’s over. Bobby goes to Marilyn after the birthday bash in Madison Square Garden. Normally the sight of a crying woman had no effect on the hard-hearted bastard. Only he’s a man and she’s a beautiful woman and he comforts her broken heart.”

“So JFK never…..”

“Never is a long time, anyway Bobby falls in love with Marilyn and starts telling her his business and JFK’s too. Starts talkin’ about leavin’ his wife and the Kennedys had a hard enough time electin’ Catholic in 1960 without having a divorce in the family for the re-election in 1964. JFK orders his brother to dump Marilyn. Bobby says he’s marrying Marilyn. JFK vows to stop this union. He can’t turn to the Mafia, since he’s stiffed them on Cuba. Instead he goes to that old drag queen, Hoover, who’s pleased as punch to get more dirt on the President. The little fruitcake tells him not to worry and flies out to Los Angeles with his boyfriend and they kill Marilyn. Bobby walks in on them and beats the shit out of them. J. Edgar confesses that his brother ordered her murder.”

“Shit. A car’s following us. In fact they’re catching up.”

“Could be anyone.”

The fat man glimpsed over his shoulder.

“No, not just ‘anyone’ has flashing lights. So keep the story coming.”

“Thanks, kid, it’s comforting to have a friend in your corner. Now where was I? Oh, yeah, Bobby wants revenge. Nothing comes to him, until the brightest and the best of the White House are discussing the drop in JFK’s polls. The president asked, if anyone has an idea to boost his popularity. Bobby suggested that they stage a fake assassination attempt. The rest of the brain trust calls him crazy, except Old Man Kennedy understood street politics and mumbles nothin’ boosts a president’s re-election more than a failed assassination. JFK accepted his father’s edict and gave the CIA the go-ahead. Those university minds plotted the fake assassination in Dallas. A CIA team on the grassy knoll shoots blanks. JFK becomes a hero, the election a landslide, and a mandate assures a new era of prosperity. None of them suspected Bobby was setting up his brother for the old Mafia boss.”

“Who was Marilyn’s real father?”

“Ten points. Bobby tells the old man how JFK had killed his daughter and they planned to place another shooter on the scene.”

“The Texas Book Depository,” the driver spat like he was rushing an answer to a game show.

“No, Oswald was a fall guy. The Mafia chief put his shooter in the building across the street. November 22, 1963. Everyone’s in place. The CIA team shootin’ blanks on the grassy knoll. The fall guy’s in the Depository. The Mafia hit man waiting for his shot. Anyway the limo makes the turn and the Mafia hit man bangs away, hitting the president. The CIA team is confused by the change in the plans and pulls off a round. The hit man delivers the coup de grace and Bobby has his revenge. Fratricide.”

“It fits,” the driver murmured with the car gliding to a halt.

“I figured you for a cop.”

The fat man dipped his hand into the bag of pasties.

“Sorry, big man,” the driver apologized, adding, “I’m only doing my job.”

“No problem, I understand and thanks for not shooting me.

He bit into the pastie.

“They want you alive.”

Blinking lights filled the interior of the car.

“Yeah, for now. You think about what they’ll do to you, once they’re rid of me?”

“What are you talking about?”

“Officer Tippitt, Lee Harvey Oswald, Dorothy Killgallen, Jack Ruby to name a few, but we don’t have time to tally the body count. I step out of this car and I’m a dead man. You’re dead too, because I told you too much.”

“That was some crazy bullshit.”

“Okay, you talk to your boys. If they ask, if I told you anything, you say no and come back to the car and drive faster than hell. A plane is waiting at a deserted airfield five miles from here and the pilot will wait another ten minutes. Tell them I have a gun and will only surrender to you.”

“You don’t have a gun.”

“Yes, I do.” The fat man withdrew a .22 Beretta from under a fold of fat. “Now if I’m wrong, step away, because I’m not goin’ to jail and I don’t wanna kill you.”

“Why not?” The driver rested his hand on the door handle.

“Because you’re my only out.” The fat man flicked off the Beretta’s safety.

“I’ll be right back.”

The longhair walked to the men behind the cars. They spoke for a few seconds and the hippie returned to sit behind the wheel. The fat man tapped him on the shoulder.

“So?”

“You were right.”

“I wish I wasn’t.” The fat man had to trust the longhair. They were both dead men if he didn’t. “You ready?”

“Ready?” The driver stamped on the accelerator. The black car burned rubber to the crack of shots. Several shattered the rear window, missing the passenger and the driver. Sirens filled their ears and the cold air rushed inside the car. “That’s one way to quit your job.”

“No one in my job has ever retired, so it’s welcome to run for your life.”

“Yeah, head out of the highway, looking for adventure and whatever comes your way,” the fat man sang, imitating Steppenwolf.

“Fire your guns into space.” The driver showed they were on the same team and the fat man shifted to a chorus from Judas Priest, “Head out of the highway.” because the open road was the only world left for people like him, until the ranks of the resistance outnumbered the liars in power and that could take an eternity.

And eternity was closer than anyone knew.