ROANOKE, Va. – A recording of the 911 call that started the manhunt in Roanoke for Michael Brown last month is revealing some new details about the case, including the fact that it was Brown’s family who called for help.
The call, which lasted more than four hours, was placed the night Brown was said to be tapping on his grandmother’s window at her home on Tillett Road in the Grandin Village area of Roanoke.
Brown is accused of killing his mother’s boyfriend, Rodney Brown on Nov. 9. A manhunt for Michael Brown lasted more than two weeks until he was arrested on Nov. 27.
According to the recording, police knew immediately that they were looking for the AWOL Marine.
The recording reveals some conversation between Brown’s mom, Vanessa Hanson, and grandmother, Diane Hanson, painting a picture of a family in turmoil over the situation.
“I went outside and I was going to talk to him and see if he was going to turn himself in because it’s the only thing I could do to save him, but he didn’t answer me,” said Vanessa Hanson.
Brown’s mom didn’t find him when she went outside, but as he had been on the run at that point, they felt it was him tapping on the window. Brown’s grandmother sounded terrified, calling the police. Much of the 911 recording is of Vanessa and Diane Hanson talking.
“Yes, but you didn’t have to call the cops; you should have let me talk to him," said Vanessa Hanson.
“I have to call them I think it’s him," said Diane Hanson.
“I’ve got to talk to him; he will listen to me,” said Vanessa Hanson.
Dozens of officers swarmed the area, finding the now iconic RV just a short distance away from the house shortly after they arrived.
In the recording, Brown’s mom talks to an FBI agent a few times on another phone.
Diane and Vanessa Hanson argue about what to do.
“We’re talking about keeping ourselves safe,” Diane Hanson.
While Brown’s grandma, Diana Hanson, sounds terrified, and insists they leave, Brown’s mother Vanessa struggles with giving up on her son, insisting he eon’t hurt them.
“You’re not making good judgement,” said Diane Hanson.
“I’ve got to talk to him,” said Vanessa Hanson.
“You don’t know what his mind is like,” said Diane Hanson.
“I do,” said Vanessa Hanson.
“No, you don’t. Look what he’s done; you don’t know. This is not your baby; stop saying that. He killed!” said Diane Hanson.
“He’ll always be my baby. He’s making bad choices,” said Vanessa Hanson.
“Oh my God,” said Diane Hanson.
Most of what follows in the recording is silence or calls to friends as police searched the area.
Officers eventually came to the house and continued the search.
Police eventually found Brown two weeks later at the scene of the crime in Franklin County.
It appears that more than 30 minutes of the 911 tape was cut out before it was turned over to 10 News by Roanoke city.
10 News is working to learn more about why that is and what those parts are about.
Michael Brown remains in jail tonight ahead of court hearings scheduled for March 2020.