Attorney General Eric Holder said at the National Press Club today that he intends to release the Justice Department’s findings in the Michael Brown shooting before he leaves office.
That’s not exactly a solid timetable, as a vote on Loretta Lynch’s nomination to succeed Holder hasn’t yet come to the Senate floor for a vote. Only one Republican senator, Orrin Hatch (Utah), has publicly indicated he’ll vote for Lynch.
Holder ordered the review of the September shooting months ago; protests have since cooled.
“It is my intention to announce our determination, the decision that we’ve made both with regard to the individual officer’s conduct in the shooting of Michael Brown, as well as the pattern and practice investigation that we have done into the Ferguson Police Department,” he said, referencing potential civil rights charges for Office Darren Wilson, who was not indicted by a grand jury.
“My hope is, as I said, that we will do this before I leave office, and I’m confident that we will do that — though I guess it’s ultimately up to Congress as to when I actually leave office,” Holder continued, quipping, “You would think, in some ways, that her — Loretta’s process would be sped up, given their desire to see me out of office.”
The attorney general added that “logic has never been necessarily a guide up there” in Congress.
“But in any case, my hope would be, as I said, to make these determinations before I go. The reviews are under way. I was briefed on both of them just last week,” Holder said. “I’m satisfied with the progress that we have made, and also comfortable in saying that I think I’m going to be able to make those calls before I leave office.”
Holder said it wasn’t “inappropriate” that he called for change at the Ferguson Police Department before the DOJ investigation was complete, noting “the reality is that I had been briefed all along on this matter.”
“I think everybody will see when we announce our results that the process that we’ve engaged in is, as I said at the time back when I went to Ferguson, independent, thorough and based only on the facts and the law,” he said. “And I’m confident that people will be satisfied with the results that we announce.”
Multiple news outlets last month, citing unnamed sources, reported that the DOJ will not recommended federal charges against Wilson.