*We now know more about the police officer who shot and killed Michael ‘Mike’ Brown last Saturday, August 9.
On Friday, as we reported, Darren Wilson was identified by the Ferguson, MO police department as the one who shot Brown multiple times.
However, six months before the fatal shooting of the unarmed teenager, Wilson earned a commendation for his “extraordinary effort in the line of duty.”
The information about the award which was presented to him by the Ferguson City Council on February 11 was posted on Wilson’s father’s Facebook page.
“Very proud of my son, Darren Wilson on his receiving a Commendation from his Police Department,” John Wilson wrote on February 11. “Congratulations Son.”
One image shows Wilson shaking hands and receiving the commendation from Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson. In a second photo, Wilson flashes a smile as he returns to his seat with his honor.
Unfortunately, no details of why he was given the commendation were stated in the Facebook post. In fact, the Facebook page for the officer’s father appears to have been taken down not too long after Yahoo News first reported the story Saturday morning.
Four days ago Facebook is also where John Wilson turned to for support without mentioning his son by name.
“Dear FB friends, Our family is in need for prayers to be sent up for a family member,” wrote John Wilson. “Circumstances do not allow for us to say anything further. Please pray with our family in mind. Put a covering of protection over our family member please.”
John Wilson thanked his many friends who were quick to offer encouragement.
“Please continue to do so as we deal with a family situation that is very challenging,” he wrote.
Meanwhile, here are some interesting and insightful items that have been reported about Darren Wilson so far:
– Wilson has been a police officer for six years and has no prior disciplinary record. (New York Times)
– Neighbors say Wilson left town several days ago. (Washington Post)
– He was an honor roll student at St. Charles High School near Ferguson in ninth and 10th grade. (The Washington Post)
* Wilson is 28 years old, and his mother died when he was 16. (The Washington Post)
– He lives in Crestwood, Mo., “a mostly white city of 11,000 people about 18 miles southwest of mostly black Ferguson.” (The Washington Post)
– He is divorced and lives with a fellow police officer, Barbara Spradling. (New York Times)
Also, Wilson’s friend Jake Shepard told CNN that Wilson has “huge heart” and that if he killed Brown then “at that moment in time, he was scared for his life.”