The U.S. Justice Department ordered a second autopsy on the body of slain teenager Michael Brown, increasing federal involvement in a case that has ignited racial tensions in Ferguson, Missouri.
Attorney General Eric Holder ordered a federal medical examiner to the conduct the autopsy “due to the extraordinary circumstances involved in this case and at the request of the Brown family,” Brian Fallon, a Justice Department spokesman, said in a statement today.
“This independent examination will take place as soon as possible,” Fallon said. “Even after it is complete, Justice Department officials still plan to take the state-performed autopsy into account in the course of their investigation.”
Brown, an unarmed black teenager, was shot and killed by police on Aug. 9 under circumstances yet to be fully explained.
The killing has led to days of protests, occasional violent clashes and a night-time curfew imposed by Missouri Governor Jay Nixon.
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