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Missouri State Senator On Michael Brown Killing: Theft Does Not Equal Death

08/16/2014 07:19 pm ET | Updated Aug 19, 2014

The Missouri state senator who was tear-gassed while demonstrating in Ferguson, Missouri, over the police killing of unarmed teen Michael Brown, protested the injection of Brown's alleged robbery prior to his death into the debate over whether Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson's actions were justified.

Maria Chappelle-Nadal (D), who represents parts of Ferguson, said in an interview with The Huffington Post on Friday, "It doesn't matter if Michael Brown committed theft or not. That's not the issue. The issue is what happened when Darren Wilson encountered Michael Brown, and when he died -- when he was killed. Those are the only facts that are necessary."

Chapelle-Nadal, who has been critical of Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon's (D) handling of events in Ferguson, went on, "You need to know what happened in their first encounter, and between that, and when Michael Brown was shot," adding "If someone is an alleged thief, that does not equal a shooting, it doesn't equal death."

Watch Chappelle-Nadal's interview with The Huffington Post above.

Chapelle-Nadal, has been critical of handling of events in Ferguson, holding police to account after she was tear-gassed while protesting, and venting her frustration with Gov. Jay Nixon's (D) role in the aftermath of the shooting, sending a Tweet of “FUCK you” to the governor on Thursday morning.

Law enforcement said on Friday that the 18-year-old Brown was the lead suspect in a strong-arm robbery of a box of Swisher Sweets cigars from a local convenience store. Authorities released surveillance photos and video, along with the identity of the officer involved in the shooting.

The community of Ferguson has been joined by the nation in their grief, anger, and demand for justice, after Michael Brown, an unarmed teen, was shot dead by a Ferguson police officer. Demonstrations have been near non-stop, some hostile. Civil rights groups have been pressing authorities for a complete investigation into the killing. On Saturday, Gov. Nixon announced that the FBI and Department of Justice officials were conducting their investigation into the killing of Brown.

The Huffington Post's Ryan J. Reilly and Christine Conetta contributed to this story.

08/26/2014 7:49 AM EDT

The Toll On Michael Brown's Family

USA Today's Yamiche Alcindor provides an intimate look at how Michael Brown's parents have been dealing with the loss of their son:

Phones constantly ring with reporters asking for interviews or family members offering support. Last week, as demands reached a tipping point, both parents moved into hotels to shield themselves.

In the days leading up to the funeral, Brown's mother continued to cry and spoke in whispers as she tried to explain her feelings.

"They say tomorrow is going to be the hardest day, but I think today was — just seeing my baby laying there, cold," Lesley McSpadden, 34, told USA TODAY. "It did something to my heart. It's too much. It's too much."

Read the rest at USA Today.

08/26/2014 7:44 AM EDT

New Audio Allegedly Captures Moment Michael Brown Was Shot

New audio has surfaced that allegedly captures the moment when Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager, was shot dead by Darren Wilson, a white police officer, on Aug. 9.

CNN aired the unverified recording on Monday night. Six shots can be heard, followed by a pause, then several more. A private autopsy performed on Aug. 17 at the request of Brown's family found that the 18-year-old was shot 6 times, including twice in the head.

Read the rest here.

08/25/2014 12:58 PM EDT

Al Sharpton: America, It's Time To Deal With Policing

08/25/2014 12:53 PM EDT

Al Sharpton: All Of Us Are Required To Respond

08/25/2014 12:48 PM EDT

Benjamin Crump: We Will Not Accept Three-Fifths Justice For Michael Brown

08/25/2014 12:28 PM EDT

Funeral Program Includes Tribute From Michael Brown's Parents

USA Today reporter, Yamiche Alcindor shares photo of program which includes tributes to Michael Brown from his mother and father

08/25/2014 12:22 PM EDT

Michael Brown's Stepmother: He Prophesied His Own Death

08/25/2014 12:16 PM EDT

Michael Brown Had Been Dreaming About Death

08/25/2014 11:57 AM EDT

Program For The Funeral

08/25/2014 11:14 AM EDT

Public Still Trying To Get Inside Church

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