The president of the NAACP on Sunday had some strong words for how the Ferguson Police Department has handled the investigation of the shooting death of an unarmed teenager by a police officer.
"At the local level, I would liken it to the Keystone Cops, but I don't want to insult the Keystone Cops," Cornell William Brooks said on CBS's "Face the Nation."
He said the St. Louis County prosecutor had a chance to "step up" and appoint a special prosecutor as the entire world watches.
"They need to step up quickly, and they need to be clear, transparent and accountable with respect to the community.”
However, he said it was important for the Justice Department to remain active and engaged.
"The attorney general has been very engaged; the president has been engaged. I've received calls from the White House late at night, early in the morning. They want to see justice served here," he said.
"I think it speaks well of the president and the attorney general that the Justice Department is on the ground," he said, adding that the NAACP was bringing forward witnesses to the FBI working in Ferguson. "That speaks well of the potential for this investigation to result in justice."
He said it was also "incredibly encouraging" that federal medical examiners would conduct an independent autopsy on the body of the Michael Brown, the victim.
"At this point in our nation’s racial history, and particularly in Ferguson, Missouri, we have people on the ground who want to know that there are people in the White House who are listening to them, because they don’t trust local authorities," he said.
"When you look at the criminal justice system in the Ferguson Police Department, it is a ‘back to the past’ time machine. The criminal justice system reminds us as a nation just how deeply flawed we are with respect to race," he said.