Weeks after Prosecutor Bob McCulloch announced that a grand jury will not indict Officer Wilson for shooting black teenager Mike Brown, critics have dug up some interesting facts. According to reports, McCulloch has some personal ties to Wilson’s legal team.
Riverfront Times reported that, McCulloch’s cousin — a cop — was indicted for “assaulting a mentally disabled man.” In addition, the prosecutor’s brother is a lawyer who “frequently defends officers.”
Here is a map, made by Little Sis, showing exactly how McCulloch is tied to Wilson’s legal team:
Riverfront Times reported:
The two main nodes to look at are Bob McCulloch’s brother, Joe McCulloch, and his cousin Thomas Moran.
Moran made headlines in 1997 after he was charged with felony assault, misdemeanor assault and conspiracy to hinder prosecution in the beating of Gregory Bell, a nineteen-year-old black man whose mental disabilities prevented him from communicating with the officers who mistook him for a burglar in his own home. An officer testified that he saw Moran, along with eight to ten St. Louis police officers, “kicking and stomping” Bell, striking him with in the head with a baton and pepper spraying him in the face while handcuffed, according to an article in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. (The article is only accessible through the newspaper’s archives.)
Moran was later acquitted of all charges by an all-white jury in Kansas City.
Although McCulloch didn’t serve as prosecutor for his cousin’s criminal case, two future members of Wilson’s legal team — attorneys Neil Bruntrager and Jim Towey — filed supportive legal briefs on behalf of the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Officers Association during a subsequent federal civil-rights lawsuit brought against Moran.
Then there’s Joe McCulloch, Bob’s brother, a cop-turned-attorney who in 2009 teamed up with Greg Kloeppel — a member of Wilson’s stable of lawyers — to defend four officers charged in the beating of a suspected meth cook in rural Missouri. (One officer was laterconvicted of felony burglary and assault.)
Three years earlier Joe McCulloch worked with Towey to successfully defend a Lincoln County deputy sheriff charged with manslaughter for shooting two men sitting in the cab of a pickup truck.
In fact, Joe McCulloch and three members of Wilson’s four-person legal team — Towey, Kloeppel and Danielle Thompson — were listed as referral attorneys on the website of the St. Louis County Police Association, prior to the website being taken down.
These facts, however, do not prove that there was a conflict of interest in McCulloch acting as prosecutor in the Mike Brown case.
Washington University law professor Peter Joy told the Riverfront Times, “The fact that Mr. McCulloch has a brother who has represented other police or has worked on other cases with some members of Darren Wilson’s defense team would not by itself trigger a conflict under the lawyer ethics rules in Missouri or other states.”
Do you think the left is using these far-fetched ties as a way to vilify McCulloch? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.