Gov. Jay Nixon Declares State Of Emergency In Missouri Before Darren Wilson's Verdict Is Even Decided

FERGUSON, MO - AUGUST 14: Missouri Governor Jay Nixon listens to residents and faith and community leaders as they discuss unrest in the town of Ferguson following the shooting death of Michael Brown during a forum held at Christ the King UCC Church on August 14, 2014 in Florissant, Missouri. Brown was shot an killed by a Ferguson police officer on August 9. Ferguson, a St. Louis suburb, has experienced four days of violent protests since the killing. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Source: Scott Olson/Getty Images News/Getty Images

With a grand jury decision whether to indict Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson for the killing of 18-year-op Michael Brown widely expected to come any day now, Missouri Governor Jay Nixon's declared a state of emergency, furthering speculation that state and local authorities are prepping for a non-indictment, anticipating an angry response from protesters in Ferguson. Nixon had made it clear in recent days that an overwhelming state response might be coming when the decision is made public — he'd previously announced that 1,000 national guard members could be called into Ferguson, warning that "Violence will not be tolerated. Residents and businesses of this region will be protected."

This, however, is a dramatic step forward. To call a state of emergency before the decision has even been announced — the order insists that this is about contingency regardless of how the grand jury decides — seems to suggest a near certainty that people are going to be upset. 

The extent of the warnings and preparations for a possible non-indictment have sparked some controversy recently — it's not uncommon for authorities and the media to be very worried about black protesters rioting, in spite of the fact that chaos and violence is clearly an equal-opportunity game. That said, even the Brown family themselves have spoken out against any possible violence, saying they do not condone such actions.

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