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Boehner: ‘A lot of unanswered questions’ in Michael Brown, Eric Garner cases

Protesters shout Wednesday night in New York's Times Square after it was announced that the New York police officer involved in the death of Eric Garner will not be indicted. (AP/Julio Cortez)

House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) said Thursday that he still has "unanswered questions" about the recent deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner, two African Americans killed during confrontations with police officers.

“Clearly both of these are serious tragedies that we’ve seen in our society," he said in response to a question at his weekly press conference. "I think the American people want to understand more of what the facts were. There are a lot of unanswered questions that Americans have, and frankly I have."

Boehner said he wouldn't rule out having House committees hold hearings into the matter. "I do think that the American people deserve more answers about what really happened here and was our system of justice handled properly," he said.

Boehner's comments a few hours after Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.), the fourth-ranking House Republican, said she "absolutely" thinks the House should hold hearings into the matter.

“We all have a lot of serious questions that need to be addressed and we need to understand what happened, why this decision was made,” she said on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" Thursday. "I would call for the House to have those hearings so that we can better understand. But we need to take action, appropriate action, making sure our local law enforcement have the training, that they're using appropriate force, which — I think we all recognize these are tragedies and it has raised a lot of questions."

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) also said she supports the Justice Department's decision to continue investigating the Garner case.

"This is really very sad and we'll have plenty to say about it," she said in brief comments to The Washington Post on Thursday morning. In a statement released Wednesday night, she said she mourned the deaths of Brown, Garner and 12-year old Tamir Rice, who was killed last month in Cleveland after police responded to an emergency call about a man pointing a gun at people in a park.

"Any one of these deaths would be a tragedy, but three such incidents appear to be a clear pattern, and that’s why the efforts by Attorney General Holder and the Department of Justice are so critical to ensure that injustice in any American community is transformed into the equality under the law that all Americans deserve," she said.