Wilson resigns, no severance pay or benefits

by Staff, |
A man walks past a burning building during rioting in Ferguson, Missouri, after a grand jury concluded Nov. 24 not to indict Darren Wilson, a white officer, for the Aug. 9 fatal shooting of Michael Brown, an unarmed black teen. | REUTERS/Jim Young

FERGUSON, Mo. — Darren Wilson resigned over the weekend and will not get further pay or severance from the Ferguson Police Department, according to reports. The 28-year-old white police officer shot and killed an unarmed 18-year-old black man, Michael Brown, Aug. 9. A grand jury found no probable cause to indict Wilson and the announcement Nov. 24 set off continuing protests in Ferguson and around the country.

His resignation comes as no surprise, as those close to the beleaguered police officer revealed weeks ago he would leave. Wilson said in his resignation letter that threats against Ferguson police and residents were a contributing factor in his decision not to continue as a law officer in the St. Louis suburb.

My "continued employment may put the residents and police officers of the City of Ferguson at risk, which is a circumstance I cannot allow," Wilson wrote.

"I'm not willing to let someone else get hurt because of me," he told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch on Saturday.

Wilson's lawyer, Neil Bruntrager, told the Associated Press that Police Chief Tom Jackson shared details with Wilson, Saturday, about the alleged threats.

"The information we had was that there would be actions targeting the Ferguson (police) department or buildings in Ferguson related to the police department," Bruntrager explained. He said Wilson, who had worked for the department for less than three years, and the city already were discussing an exit strategy, acknowledging that staying on as an officer there would be impossible.

Wilson's resignation did not stop 100 protestors turning out Saturday night in Ferguson to burn an American flag. Two dozen of them were arrested, AP reported. His departure from the police force also has has not dissuaded Brown's family from considering a civil suit for wrongful death. Their lawyer, Benjamin Crump, said "they really wanted the killer of their child to be held accountable."