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Police identify officer who shot US teen

US authorities on Friday (Aug 15) identified the officer who shot dead an unarmed African American teen in the Missouri town of Ferguson last weekend, sparking protests and riots. 

WASHINGTON: US authorities on Friday (Aug 15) identified the officer who shot dead an unarmed African American teen in the Missouri town of Ferguson last weekend, sparking protests and riots. Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson, speaking to reporters, named the officer as Darren Wilson, a six-year veteran of the police force.

The victim, Michael Brown, was killed in broad daylight on Saturday, with witnesses and law enforcement providing conflicting accounts of how the 18-year-old lost his life. Brown's family and others had called for the release of the officer's name, citing the need for transparency amid the unrest that followed his killing.

The shooting had sparked riots and a week of protests. "At 12:01pm our officer encountered Michael Brown on Canfield Drive, at 12:04 a second officer arrived on the scene immediately following the shooting and at 12:05 a supervisor was dispatched to the scene and subsequent officers arrived," Jackson told reporters. 

Jackson said the police would also be releasing police dispatch records and a video from a different convenience store where a robbery had taken place on Saturday before the shooting. However, he did not say if there was any link between Brown and the robbery.

The police had earlier withheld the name of the officer who shot Brown because of fears that he could be harmed amid the volatile protests that followed Brown's death. Wilson had been placed on paid administrative leave after the shooting.

Police Chief Jackson said he would answer reporters' questions at another briefing later on Friday.

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