(KRON) — California Attorney General Rob Bonta is getting involved in the Banko Brown case, his office confirmed Tuesday. Bonta will review evidence from the case and investigate whether San Francisco District Attorney Brooke Jenkins committed “abuse of discretion” for deciding not to file charges against the man accused of shooting Brown.
Brown, a 24-year-old transgender Black man, was shot by a Walgreens security guard after shoplifting from the store, surveillance video shows.
Jenkins opted not to charge the security guard accused of shooting Brown. Michael Earl-Wayne Anthony, 33, was arrested after the shooting but not charged.
“A second view by another set of prosecutors, I think it’s important for credibility for the entire system that that review takes place because from our perspective, the DA’s decision was totally contrary to the evidence,” said attorney John Burris, who is representing the Brown family.
Burris noted there is no guarantee that Bonta will file charges, but the Brown family is elated at the news.
Jenkins said Anthony believed he was in imminent danger when he fired the shot that killed Brown, who was unarmed. After news of Bonta’s involvement broke Tuesday night, she released a statement.
“Banko Brown’s death was a tragedy, and I join his friends and family in wishing he was still here today.
I heard the public’s concerns and we released a comprehensive analysis and report that included investigative records, witness statements and video evidence, so the public could see all of the facts and details and understand how we arrived at our decision. We provided the highest degree of transparency possible that we could with this case.
We welcome the Attorney General’s review and will assist and cooperate as needed.”
When the video was released on May 15, people took to the streets to protest Brown’s death. They marched on Market Street, bearing signs such as “We saw the tape Banko was murdered.” Some San Francisco leaders also voiced their displeasure with Jenkins not charging Anthony.
“I am horrified by this video which appears to show Banko Brown being executed for shoplifting. I do not understand how the District Attorney could have reviewed this video and concluded that the guard ‘believed he was in mortal danger and acted in self-defense,” Sup. Dean Preston said.
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Brown’s funeral will be Thursday at 11 a.m. at Third Baptist Church, 1399 McAllister Street. Burris and the Brown family will have a press conference the next day.