State of Emergency declared in Ferguson after shooting incident
Police arrested more than a dozen protesters in St. Louis on Monday who were demanding the dissolution of the Ferguson Police Department.
Meanwhile, St. Louis County Executive Steve Stenger has declared a state of emergency and turned oversight of the Ferguson situation over to County Police Chief Jon Belmar, in the wake of at least three shooting incidents overnight Sunday. “Chief Belmar shall exercise all powers and duties necessary to preserve order, prevent crimes, and protect the life and property of our citizens,” Stenger said in a statement issued Monday afternoon.
A young black man was shot and critically wounded by police officers towards the end of a largely peaceful day of observance, protests and prayer service for Michael Brown.
Shootings were reported on Monday morning also around the place Brown was killed last August by Officer Darren Wilson. But the police said they were not connected to the protests.
“The weekend’s events were peaceful and promoted a message of reconciliation and healing,” US attorney general Loretta Lynch, an African American, said in a statement. “But incidents of violence, such as we saw last night, are contrary to both that message, along with everything that all of us, including this group, have worked to achieve over the past year.” Demonstrators had taken to the streets to mark the anniversary of Brown’s death in a fateful encounter on August 9, 2014 with officer Darren Wilson.
A crowd of about 300 people had gathered earlier to mark the anniversary, during which they observed four and a half minutes of silence and released two white doves.