Attorney General Eric Holder Vows Thorough Probe of Ferguson Shooting

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from The Wall Street Journal,

Justice Department Seeks to Calm Tensions in Wake of Nightly Clashes Between Police and Protesters.

Attorney General Eric Holder sought to assure residents here Wednesday that the U.S. Justice Department was thoroughly probing the shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown by a police officer.

During a daylong visit, Mr. Holder said he had assigned “very experienced” agents and prosecutors to investigate the Aug. 9 death of the unarmed teenager, and said he understood their concerns because of his own experiences as a black man.

The attorney general crisscrossed this St. Louis suburb of 21,000 to meet with residents, elected officials, investigators and others, including the family of Mr. Brown with whom he met privately at the office of the U.S. Attorney in St. Louis.

Mr. Holder personally pledged that there would be a “fair and independent” probe, officials said, adding that the Brown family asked questions about the investigative process during the 20-minute afternoon meeting.

Mr. Holder’s visit coincided with the first day a local grand jury began to review the shooting of the black teenager by a white officer that has sparked days of unrest.

Attorney General Eric Holder shakes hands with Bri Ehsan, 25, following his meeting with students at St. Louis Community College

In a meeting with about 50 community members assembled in an auditorium at the Florissant Valley Campus of St. Louis Community College, Mr. Holder said many African-Americans mistrust the police and recalled his own experience being stopped by law enforcement.

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