A Missouri-area bar has drawn protests and condemnation for capitalizing on the controversial death of Michael Brown with a drinks special promotion.
The St. Joseph bar Mugshots, whose tagline is "where sarcasm is always free" was offering a “Michael Brown Special – 6 shots of Jose Cinge for $10.” Brown, an unarmed black teen, was shot six times by former Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson on August 9. A grand jury decided not to bring charges against Wilson in Brown's death, a result that has led to nationwide protests and a rise in racial tension in the Missouri region.
The co-owner of Mugshots, appeared on a local Fox affiliate station to defend himself but did not show his face or reveal his name for fear of potential threats to his family. “It’s not meant to cause any harm,” he told Fox 4. “I should have thought a little bit more about it before I made it a shot special.”
Stapleton said he got the idea from Facebook where he saw that another bar had made a similar Brown tie-in.
“It looked like it was getting a good response so I just decided to use it here,” he said. “That’s what bar owners do if they find something works at another bar they try to use it at their bar.”
There has been a significant racial divide over the grand jury's decision in the Michael Brown case and although the local investigation has concluded, a federal one is still ongoing. On Monday evening, new audio files recording in the immediate aftermath of Brown's death were released to the public by the St. Louis prosecutor's office. “There’s going to be a problem,” an officer is heard saying on one recording. He added: “We’re going to need crowd control.”