CITY OF FERGUSON IN FLAMES AFTER PROTEST

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  • Grand Jury’s Decision not accepted

 

Smoke billowed from burned-out buildings and sidewalks were strewn with broken glass Tuesday morning, after Ferguson erupted over a grand jury’s decision not to indict a white police officer in the killing of unarmed black 18-year-old Michael Brown. The Missouri town erupted in violence as protestors shot at police and set cars and buildings ablaze Monday night after the grand jury’s announcement.

Groups of youths roamed the streets, looting stores and spreading mayhem, as flames lit up the night sky in this suburb of St Louis, Missouri. At least 12 buildings and two police cars were set on fire and destroyed, but no one was killed or seriously hurt. After the violence broke out in Ferguson, protests quickly spread to major US cities, including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Washington, but there were no reports of violence.

The grand jury concluded that Officer Darren Wilson, who shot at 18-year-old Michael Brown 12 times, had acted in legitimate self defense after they got into an “altercation” as the officer investigated a robbery at a store. But according to the US attorney General, a separate federal civil rights investigation into the Wilson incident and Ferguson policing in general, will continue

Brown’s death in August had sparked weeks of sometimes violent protests, but according to reports, Monday’s episode was worse. Monday night’s protests were far more destructive than any of the others that followed Brown’s August 9 death, with more than a dozen businesses badly damaged or destroyed. Authorities reported hearing hundreds of gunshots, which for a time prevented fire crews from fighting the flames.

President Obama in an address, called for calm and restraint in these trying times. He urged that every effort be made to ensure no harm comes to anyone as peaceful protests are not prohibited. Obama invited all stakeholders to ensure steps are taken to maintain public safety without restricting the right of peaceful protest. He said this too must be done in such a way that further escalations are prevented.

There were 61 arrests in Ferguson overnight, many for burglary and trespassing, while there were 21 arrests in St. Louis, where protestors broke some store windows along South Grand Avenue. The grand jury’s decision means that Officer Darren Wilson, who is white, will not face any state criminal charges for killing Brown, whose death inflamed deep racial tensions between many black Americans and police.

 

Extracted and modified from Yahoo News

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