For days something has been irking me about the Michael Brown shooting and the autopsy performed. Repeatedly we've heard from witnesses who do not agree with Officer Darren Wilson's account. They have said that either, one, Brown was shot in the back or, two, he had his hands raised in surrender, while standing upright, when Wilson shot him.
Well, the autopsy showed that Brown was not shot in the back, so the witnesses that claimed that are now confirmed to either be mistaken or liars. But what about the hands raised witnesses? Forget for a moment that most of these witnesses were the same ones who claimed Brown was struck repeatedly in the back. For whatever reason, the press has been reporting that the autopsy somehow confirms anti-Wilson testimony. But that's not true. Simple mathematics disproves their testimony and likely confirms Wilson's.
But before we get to that, let's establish a few facts. First, the particular bullet in question that disproves this testimony is one that entered Mr. Brown's skull and exited into his collar bone.
Second, there are no videos or testimony that the street on which the shooting occurred was unusually sloped or hilly.
Third, we need to look into what those who stated that Brown had his hands up in surrender say they witnessed.
Tiffany Mitchell stated, “After the [first] shot, the kid just breaks away. The cop follows him, kept shooting, the kid’s body jerked as if he was hit. After his body jerked he turns around, puts his hands up, and the cop continues to walk up on him and continues to shoot until he goes all the way down."
Disregarding the fact that Brown was not shot in the back (which already disproves this testimony), to summarize, several shots are fired at Brown first, then he turns around and the fatal bullet is fired. Three total witnesses, Dorian Johnson, Tiffany Mitchell, and Piaget Crenshaw, say the same thing: Brown was shot in the back, then he turned around, then he was mortally wounded. His head was raised.
Fourth, if Brown's head was raised, then the shot must have been angled, otherwise any exit wound would have exited the back of his skull and not hit any other part of his body. To go from any part of the head into the collar bone is a pretty steep angle.
Fifth, how far away was Brown from Wilson? Well, according to these three witnesses, there was a sizable gap between the two men. Another witness, Michael Brady, seems to corroborate these stories by placing the distance at about 20 feet.
All the facts are now assembled to show how the witnesses testimony falls apart. But just to recap: the street is flat, Michael Brown has his hands and head raised, he is twenty feet away from Officer Wilson, and the bullet in question went from his head to his collar bone.
Now all we need to do is create a triangle that shows the trajectory of the bullet. Actually, we have to create a small one first to get the proper big triangle. And assuming that both Mr. Brown and Mr. Wilson were both standing straight up, we can use the Pythagorean Theorem to find out all the proper measurements, or a2 + b2 = c2.
Still following? It's a bit tough at first because Mr. Brown has a height of six feet, four inches, so we cannot use him as the lowest point on a triangle. However, that can be the height on the first triangle we make. So, height would be equal to 6.33, which would be a in our equation.
To get the proper angle, we would use the distance given by Mr. Brady in his testimony, 20 feet, and that would be b. Now we can find out c, the hypotenuse. 6.33 squared is roughly 40. 20 squared is 400. Together, that's 440. The square root of that is almost exactly 21.
Now all we have to do is double the numbers and retain the same angles. The conclusion is... Officer Brown would have to be... 12 feet, 8 inches to have shot Michael Brown the way that "witnesses" say he did. Officer Wilson is not 12 feet, 8 inches.
But you know how this would all make sense? If we take into account Officer Wilson's testimony, that Brown was charging him, his head lowered. There wouldn't have to be a big angle any more because, if Wilson fired forward, it could easily go through Brown's head and into his collarbone.
Math has disproved the already shaky testimony of pro-Brown witnesses and confirmed the story of Officer Wilson.