So says the Washington Post, which apparently is getting this from their sources at Main Justice (and that answers the question whether the Alton Sterling decision would be handled by the acting U.S. Attorney or the Justice Department in Washington)…
The Justice Department has decided not to bring charges against the officers involved in the death of Alton Sterling, whose videotaped shooting by police in Baton Rouge last summer prompted unrest across the city, and is planning to reveal in the next 24 hours that it has closed the probe, according to four people familiar with the matter.
As of Tuesday afternoon, the Sterling family had yet to be informed by the Justice Department of the decision, and it is unclear how and when the department will announce its findings.
“We have not heard nor received an update and are unaware of any charges that may or may not be filed,“ said Ryan Julison, a spokesman for the Sterling family’s attorneys. “We have not received word, nor has the family been given any notice of upcoming updates regarding this case.”
The case will be the first time under Attorney General Jeff Sessions that the department has publicly declined to prosecute officers investigated for possible wrongdoing in a high-profile case, and officials in Baton Rouge have been girding for possible reaction there.
So there it is. And if the Post is correct about the outcome it’s a surprise to no one in Baton Rouge; it’s been long rumored that Blaine Salamoni and Howie Lake II, the two Baton Rouge policemen involved in Sterling’s death would be cleared.
If the announcement is made Tuesday evening or Wednesday morning, there may be a strategic consideration in play. Weather.com says there’s an 80 percent chance of rain in Baton Rouge tomorrow, so perhaps having Mother Nature contribute to knocking down the intensity of whatever follows the announcement was built into the timing.
More as we get it.
UPDATE: Now, this…
— Brett Buffington (@BrettBuffington) May 2, 2017
There was a report, somewhere, which had it that the Sterling family would be given several hours’ notice of the decision in advance of the public. So this would be that notice, and a good indication the Post’s timeline is legitimate.
UPDATE #2: On the other hand, this…
— Elizabeth Vowell (@ElizabethWAFB) May 2, 2017