Ferguson, Missouri police officer Darren Wilson, who fatally shot Michael Brown in August and sparked widespread protests, sat down for his first interview on Tuesday after a grand jury decided not to indict him, telling ABC News‘ George Stephanopoulos that he was sure he did the right thing in shooting Brown.
“The reason I have a clean conscience is that I know I did my job right,” Wilson said during the interview, part of which ran on ABC’s “World News Tonight With David Muir” on Tuesday night.
During the interview, Wilson said Brown threw the first punch in the altercation, hitting him in the left side of his face.
“I don’t know what or how many [punches] hit me after that, I just know that there was a barrage of swinging and grabbing and pulling for about 10 seconds,” Wilson told Stephanopolous.
Wilson also claimed that Brown had “an immense power” as the officer tried to subdue him.
“The way I’ve described it, it was like a five-year-old holding on to
Recounting the event, Wilson claimed that Brown tried to shoot him with the officer’s own gun during their struggle, after which Wilson pulled the trigger of his gun. The weapon only went off after his third attempt to fire it, Wilson said, after which Brown took off and Wilson followed in pursuit.
Asked why he gave chase, Wilson said, “My job isn’t to just sit and wait. I have to see where this guy goes … that’s what we were trained to do.”
Quizzed on whether, if Michael Brown were white, the situation would have played out the same, Wilson asserted, “Yes. No question.”
As to whether the incident would forever haunt him, Wilson replied, “I don’t think it’s a haunting, it’s always gonna be something that happened.”
More of the interview will air Tuesday on “Nightline” and Wednesday morning on “Good Morning America.”