Watch George Stephanopoulos' Interview With Darren Wilson, Who Says Of The Shooting: "I Don't Think It's Haunting"
In an ABC exclusive Tuesday night, the first portion of George Stephanopoulos' interview with Darren Wilson, who was cleared of charges Monday for the fatal shooting of Ferguson teen Michael Brown, aired. In the interview, Wilson said that he'd found life after shooting the teen in August "stressful;" that he'd grown a beard to avoid being recognized; that he has a "clean conscience" and knew he'd have acted the same way if Brown was a white man; and that his wife, an officer he quietly married last month, was pregnant.
The remaining part of the interview air Wednesday morning on Good Morning America. Wilson told Stephanopoulos:
You’re always looking, you’re always wondering if someone’ll recognize you, if someone is following you. Just every possibility you can think of ... [You take precautions] from where you sit in the restaurant to, you know, where you drive. Everything has to run through your head. It’s every time you walk, you make sure no one’s following you, everything.
In a Tweet shortly after conducting the interview Tuesday, Stephanopoulos said that "no question [was] off-limits." Asked about his reflections on the shooting of Brown, Wilson replied: "The reason I have a clean conscience is I know I did my job right ... I thought, 'I have to [shoot him]. If I don't, he will kill me if he gets to me.' "
In grand jury testimony released late Monday after the verdict announcement, it was revealed Wilson had described Brown as "Hulk Hogan"-like and as intimidating as a "demon," words that have provoked furious reactions. He added to Stephanopoulos that there was "no way" Brown had his hands up when Wilson shot him, a much-debated detail that has been contested by eyewitnesses.
When asked by Stephanopoulos if the incident would always haunt him, Wilson replied: "I don't think it's haunting; it's always going to be something that happened."
On Wednesday morning, Michael Brown's parents appeared on CBS' This Morning. "“His conscience is clear," Brown's mother, Lesley McSpadden, repeated in disbelief. "How can your conscience be clear after killing someone, even if it was an accidental death?”
They had just one question for Wilson, Brown's dad, Michael Brown Snr., added. “Why did you choose to wake up with a chip on your shoulder and do what you did to our son?”
Meanwhile, protests continued Tuesday night in Ferguson, described by police chief Jon Belmar as a "much better night." At least 44 people were arrested, roughly half the number of the night before.