A Tale of Two Shootings


In August of 2014 Michael Brown, 18, 6-foot-4, 290 lbs., robbed a store in Ferguson, Missouri. Brown (who apparently had recently used marijuana) assaulted the clerk, then walked down the middle of the street before being stopped by city police officer Darren Wilson, who tentatively matched Brown as one of the possible suspects in the recent robbery.

Brown almost immediately assaulted Wilson and went for his gun, which discharged. He then ran, but reversed course and charged the officer, who shot Brown numerous times until he collapsed and died.

Those facts are now not in dispute and were the eventual conclusions of both local and state authorities. An investigation from Eric Holder’s Justice Department confirmed that Wilson’s behavior was justified. Immediately after Brown’s death, riots overwhelmed Ferguson. The shooting soon became a national rallying movement and begat the new “Black Lives Matter” movement. The latter adopted as its slogan the purported last words of Brown -- “hands up, don’t shoot!” -- a plea that, according to both reliable witnesses and the investigations, was entirely fabricated post facto. Nevertheless, it resonated and was voiced by professional athletes, celebrities, the news media, and members of Congress.

Nearly a year later, 32-year-old Kathryn Michelle “Kate” Steinle was fatally shot in the back, allegedly by illegal alien Francisco Sanchez, on July 1, 2015, in the Embarcadero district in San Francisco. Sanchez had either stolen or acquired a stolen firearm and fired off three shots, one that pierced the aorta after entering the back of Ms. Steinle. Her murderer was a seven-time convicted felon. He was on probation from a Texas conviction, and he had an existing felony warrant pending. Sanchez, a Mexican national, had previously been deported from the United States on five occasions. San Francisco authorities ignored a federal detainer and released him after less than 30 days in detention -- in accordance with the city’s “sanctuary city” policy of common non-cooperation with federal authorities in the arrest, jailing and possible deportation of illegal aliens.

Some Facts

A few comparative observations: Michael Brown’s supporters claimed that he was shot in the back, an allegation that sparked days of violent rioting and yet was proven false both by the autopsy and forensic evidence, along with eyewitness accounts. Kate Steinle was indisputably shot in the back, a fact that was never questioned. No demonstrations followed her death.