“The victim began expressing he was distraught over personal matters to the witnesses. The witnesses heard the victim rummaging in the backseat, then heard a gunshot and observed the victim had sustained a gunshot wound to the head.” – St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department
Crawford’s father, Edward Crawford Sr., doesn’t believe the death was a suicide. He says the father of four young children had just gotten a new apartment, and was training for a warehouse job. This isn’t the first Ferguson protester who has died under suspicious circumstances. In September 2016, the body of Ferguson activist Darren Seals was discovered inside a burning car. Seals had been shot, and police declared the death a homicide. In November 2014, 20-year-old Deandre Joshua was found shot in the head in his own car with severe burns after being lit on fire.
Crawford told the St. Louis Dispatch in 2015 that he was not throwing the canister at police. Crawford claimed there were children in the area:
“I didn’t throw a burning can back at police,” said Crawford. “I threw it out of the way of children. I can’t even throw a baseball that far, let alone a burning can of tear gas.” – Edward Crawford
He was later charged for assault and for interfering with a police officer in relation to the incident.