Vastly different characterizations have emerged of a white suburban St. Louis police officer who fatally shot an unarmed black 18-year-old.

Although protesters in Ferguson have called Darren Wilson a murderer, his supporters say he's being wrongly maligned for doing his job.

Wilson has been out of public sight since shortly after Michael Brown's Aug. 9 death, and his family isn't talking.

The Brown family's attorneys have labeled Wilson as a killer, though no charges have been filed.

But a former high school classmate, Jake Shepard, says Wilson isn't racially motivated, doesn't harbor hate and was always respectable, well-mannered and "genuine."

Wilson divorced last November. His mother was a convicted forger who died in 2002. Wilson got a commendation in February from the Ferguson police force.