- Police named Darren Wilson as the officer that shot dead Michael Brown, 18, on August 9 in Ferguson, Missouri
- Neighbor's claim Wilson's mother was a known con artist
- She would allegedly befriend people in the community and steal their identifies to take out loans and rack up credit card debt
- Durso died when her son - now 28 - was about 18
Mother of policeman who shot dead Michael Brown was 'a serial con artist who defrauded thousands of dollars from neighbors in stolen credit card scheme'
Neighbors claim the policeman accused of shooting dead an unarmed teenager in St Louis had a serial con woman for a mother, MailOnline can reveal.
Darren Wilson’s mother Tonya Durso won the trust of her neighbors then cheated them out of hundreds of thousands of dollars by stealing their identities and taking out vast loans and credit card debt.
At the time she committed the offenses she was on parole for similar crimes elsewhere the state and afterwards died at the age of 35 under mysterious circumstances.
Neighbors today revealed how they were stunned that Wilson became a police officer after his mother behaved so deviously towards them.
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Wilson was finally named on Friday by police in Ferguson, a suburb of St Louis, in Missouri that has been torn apart by five nights of protests and rioting over the death of Michael Brown, 18.
Wilson accused by witnesses of shooting him even though he had his hands up.
Ferguson police only disclosed his name after coming under intense pressure and facing lawsuits by civil liberties groups.
Wilson is 28 and currently lives in Crestwood, a suburb of St Louis which is 94 per cent white and 1.6 per cent black.
His house is a $180,000 bungalow with a pool and a basketball hoop in the drive on a sleepy street in a neighborhood that one resident described as 'solidly middle class'.
The property backs onto a church which reads: 'When our dream roads take strange turns'.
But Wilson’s life has not always been so idyllic.
He grew up in St Peters, another majority white suburb of St Louis, where his family were popular and well thought of - until his mother’s deception was exposed.
She had three children by at least two different men and lived with her husband at the time in a large detached bungalow on the leafy street.
Mickelle Gordon, 39, a dental assistant, lived over the road from the family and said that Wilson's mother was ‘charismatic’ and ‘charming’ and first targeted her brother Jason, who lost tens of thousands including some of his pension.
Gordon said: ‘He used to work lots and saved all his money. She said that she was an investor and that she could help him.
‘She got his social security number and stole his identity. She used it to take out loans, credit cards and went through his savings. He never got it back’.
After that she fooled Gordon’s mother Sandy Finney, 67, an office manager, and stole her ID too.
Finney said: ‘My husband and I were naive. She cleaned us out for at least $100,000 and $30,000 in cash which we didn’t get back.’
She explained that his mother used to intercept her mail and sent of for pre-approved credit cards that she would use herself.
She got into do much debt that she had to take out one loan after another just to keep the scam afloat.
Finney claimed that Wilson's mother made a copy of the key they had left by the front door to let herself in when she wanted, using the cover story that she was letting the cat back in the house.
But really she was forwarding her calls from creditors to her own number so Finney had no idea how much debt she was in.
The charade came tumbling down in February 2001 when Finney was told by her own bank that she could not deposit any money and the authorities were alerted.
According to public records Wilson's mother pleaded guilty to six counts of forgery and one count of stealing at the 11th Judicial Court in St Louis.
In 1998 she had already admitted another six counts of stealing in an unrelated matter.
His mother's victims say however that she did not serve any time in jail and went into bankruptcy in October 2002
The following month she died.
Finney said: ‘They were not able to tell us if it was a suicide. As a victim you are not told anything’.
Only afterwards did she discover that his mother was on probation in Washington, Missouri, for doing something similar to somebody else.
Finney added: ‘I’m surprised Wilson passed the background checks to become a policeman. People can change but that was a bad home. His mother was a serial conwoman’.
Wilson's mother died when he would have been 16.
What effect that had on him at that age is unclear, but it appears that he bounced around the St Louis area at a number of addresses.
At the age of 22 for reasons only Wilson knows, he signed up to join the police and live a life on the other side of the law from that which his mother chose.
At Wilson’s current home, neighbors knew nothing of his dark family past and their biggest concern was that rioters would come and wreck the street if they found out where he lived.
A female school teacher told MailOnline: ‘Our neighborhood didn't do anything wrong. I'm worried people are going to come up here and start looting.
'They just moved in and seemed like nice people.
'Things are pretty quiet round here'.
Wilson, who has a licence for hunting and for fishing, has a metal American flag in his front lawn and small couch sits on the porch suggesting that he likes to relax out the front of his house during the warm summer nights.
Nobody answered at the door when MailOnline visited.
A husband and wife in their 60s who had lived in the neighborhood for many years said that it was full of respectable people.
The man said: 'Crime is not really an issue around here. The biggest thing we have to worry about is the occasional party from teenagers but we don't have any at the moment’
In a surprising twist, it can also be revealed that Wilson won a commendation for 'extraordinary effort in the line of duty' in February, according to NBC's Tom Winter.
He spent four years with the Ferguson police department and two previous years in the Jennings district, Winter said.
Neighbors told USA Today that Wilson was 'tall and slim' and was often seen walking his dog.
Another neighbor, Ron Gorski, told USA Today: 'He's a young guy. 'Things happen and it's a complicated situation. I feel for the family and the entire country.'
Ferguson police chief Thomas Jackson said the shooting had been 'devastating, absolutely devastating' to Wilson, adding: 'We had no complaints about the officer. He was a gentleman. A quiet officer. He has been an effective officer.'