Michael Brown's mother loses Ferguson City Council race 5 years after his killing

Doug Stanglin and John Bacon

Lesley McSpadden, whose son Michael Brown was killed by a white police officer in an incident that sparked national attention, has lost a three three-way race for a seat on the Ferguson City Council in Missouri.

The death of the 18-year-old African American by a Ferguson police officer in 2014 touched off months of protests and violence and helped give rise to the Black Lives Matter movement.

McSpadden finished third in a three-way race Tuesday in Ferguson’s 3rd Ward. Unofficial St. Louis County election results show the winner was Fran Griffin. The race also featured Keith Kallstrom, who was the incumbent.

McSpadden explained why she was running in an interview with The Associated Press: "I wanted to go back and do something right in a place that did something so very wrong to my son, and I think that's what my son would want, as well."

McSpadden, in an emailed statement, congratulated Griffin on her victory, adding, "I feel proud of the positive race we ran, and I loved talking to the Ferguson community.”

“Tomorrow, the work continues and I intend to be a part of it no matter my position," she said. "I’m not going anywhere.”

Brown was fatally shot by white Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson who claimed he was forced to shoot when the unarmed Brown came at him menacingly after attacking the officer during a street confrontation.

A St. Louis County grand jury’s November 2014 decision not to indict Wilson sparked renewed unrest in the city, which is part of the Greater St. Louis area.

McSpadden announced her candidacy for the city council last August while standing near where her son was killed.

"I learned to walk again," she said at the time, "and this is one of my first steps."

McSpadden had said she wanted to focus her campaign on community policing, mental health and wellness, and economic equality.

"I chose to come back to a place that caused me pain to make it right for them (residents)," she said. "Michael's death has taken so much out of me, but if I can help others, I would go through this process again and again and again."

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Michael Brown's mother loses Ferguson City Council race 5 years after his killing