The Ferguson police officer who shot unarmed teen Michael Brown had worked at a department that was disbanded by authorities over racial tensions, the Washington Post reports.
Darren Wilson and the other officers at the Jennings, Missouri, police department lost their jobs three years ago. Wilson was a rookie cop at the time.
The newspaper described the old Jennings Police Department as "a mainly white department mired in controversy and notorious for its fraught relationship with residents, especially the African American majority... not an ideal place to learn how to police."
The city council deemed tensions between officers and black residents so bad that it was necessary to fire everyone and build a new, more credible department from scratch.
Some officers from the disgraced department reapplied for their jobs. Wilson got a job in Ferguson, where he kept a clean disciplinary record and even earned a commendation. But that was all before the events that transpired earlier this month.
Brown's death sparked days of protest and drew national attention. Since the shooting, Wilson has kept out of the public eye. An incident report of the shooting has raised more questions than it has answered.
The Washington Post report comes amid disturbing stories of alleged police misconduct from neighboring departments have come to light.
Just days after Brown was killed, another black man in north St. Louis, Kajieme Powell, was fatally shot in a barrage of police gunfire after allegedly stealing energy drinks and donuts from a convenience store. St. Louis Police said the man was armed with a knife, but raw video of the incident appears to contradict that.
Later last week, Lieutenant Ray Albers of the St. Ann Police was suspended after being filmed pointing a semi-automatic rifle at a protester and threatening to kill him.
On Aug. 22, St. Louis County officer Dan Page was removed from duty after a video of him making bigoted comments was released.