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 Crowds gather for Michael Brown's funeral
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1 month ago

Crowds gather for Michael Brown's funeral

Hundreds lined up at the Temple Missionary Baptist Church in St. Louis early Monday morning ahead of the service for Michael Brown.

Brown was killed in a controversial shooting by Fergusom, Missouri police on August 9th. He was unarmed at the time, and his death set off several nights of violent protests.

Michael Brown's parents have asked for a "day of silence" from protesters as they mourn their loss and say goodbye.

Read more: http://nbcnews.to/1p5Dlev

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2 months ago

New fear: What happens in Ferguson if no charges?

FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) - Calm has come to Ferguson, Missouri, after nights of violent unrest over the shooting death of 18-year-old Michael Brown.

But a crucial question lingers: What happens if the grand jury considering the case doesn't return a charge against the officer?

The fear among some local residents and officials is that such an outcome could stoke new anger and violence.

U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill told The Associated Press she's pushing for federal and local investigations to be completed around the same time so that all evidence can be made public. It's a step many consider important should prosecutors decide not to charge the officer.

Her office said Friday the Department of Justice hasn't given a timeline for the federal investigation of the Aug. 9 shooting.

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2 months ago

Ferguson: Violence ebbs, but anger remains

Heavy rains slowed the protests overnight in Ferguson, Missouri.

Crowds remained peaceful and only a few arrests were reported.

On Wednesday the cry for justice came outside a St. Louis courthouse, where a grand jury met for the first time to hear evidence in the shooting death of unarmed teenager Michael Brown.

Attorney General Eric Holder traveled to Ferguson on Wednesday to check in on the ongoing federal civil rights investigation that already includes more than 100 witness interviews and an independent autopsy.

"It doesn't mean that this thing should drag on. We will try to do this as expeditiously as we can. on the other hand at the end of the day it's most important that we get it right," Holder said.

Holder met privately with the Brown family after talking with members of the community, elected officials and Captain Ron Johnson, the Missouri State Highway Patrol officer charged with trying to keep the peace along the front lines of the protests.

Read more: http://nbcnews.to/1ljcmBn

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2 months ago

Holder calls for end to violence in Ferguson

WASHINGTON (AP) - Attorney General Eric Holder is promising a thorough investigation into the fatal police shooting of Michael Brown while calling for "an end to the acts of violence in the streets" of Ferguson, Missouri.

Holder says the Justice Department "will defend the right of protesters to peacefully demonstrate and for the media to cover a story that must be told." He is calling on the citizens of Ferguson "to join with law enforcement in condemning the actions of looters, vandals and others seeking to inflame tensions."

Holder is traveling to Ferguson on Wednesday to meet with FBI and other officials carrying out an independent federal investigation into Brown's death. His remarks appeared late Tuesday in an open letter published on the St. Louis Post-Dispatch website.

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2 months ago

Obama sending attorney general Holder to Missouri

WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama is sending Attorney General Eric Holder to Ferguson, Missouri, to meet with federal law enforcement authorities investigating the police shooting of an unarmed teenager.

Obama says Holder will travel to the St. Louis suburb on Wednesday.

Holder recently authorized a federal autopsy on the body of Michael Brown, the unarmed 18-year-old who was fatally shot on Aug. 9. Brown was black; the officer who shot him was white.

Obama spoke from the White House on Monday after independent autopsy results determined that Brown was shot at least six times, including twice in the head. Missouri's governor also called in the National Guard early Monday after police again used tear gas to quell protests that have taken nightly since Brown's death.

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2 months ago

Missouri governor sends National Guard to Ferguson

FERGUSON, Mo. - Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon has ordered the National Guard to Ferguson to help restore order to the St. Louis suburb after a week of that has seen several violent protests over the fatal police shooting of an unarmed black teenager.

Nixon made the announcement in statement issued early Monday after another night of clashes between police and protesters in Ferguson.

Officers used tear gas to clear demonstrators off the streets late Sunday.

Capt. Ron Johnson of the Missouri Highway Patrol is command in Ferguson. He says authorities were responding to reports of gunfire, looting, vandalism and protesters who hurled Molotov cocktails.

2 months ago

Gov declares emergency, imposes curfew in Ferguson

FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) - Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon declared a state of emergency Saturday and imposed a curfew in a St. Louis suburb where police and protesters have clashed after a black teenager was shot to death by a white police officer a week ago.

Nixon said that though many protesters were making themselves heard peacefully, the state would not allow looters to endanger the community where 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot in a street. The curfew will run from midnight to 5 a.m. Sunday.

"I am committed to making sure the forces of peace and justice prevail," Nixon said at a chaotic press conference at a church that was interrupted repeatedly by people objecting to the curfew and demanding that the officer who shot Brown be charged with murder.

"We must first have and maintain peace. This is a test. The eyes of the world are watching," Nixon said. "We cannot allow the ill will of the few to undermine the good will of the many."

Nixon's curfew announcement came after tensions again flared in Ferguson late Friday night. Local police had earlier in the day identified the officer who shot Brown as Darren Wilson and released documents and video footage alleging that Brown had robbed a convenience store just before he was shot. Police said Wilson was unaware Brown was a suspect when he initially encountered him walking in the street with a friend.

Nixon said the U.S. Department of Justice is beefing up its civil rights investigation of the shooting.

Missouri State Highway Patrol Capt. Ron Johnson, who is in charge of security in Ferguson, said 40 FBI agents were going door-to-door in the neighborhood starting Saturday, talking to people who might have seen or have information about the shooting.

Johnson assured those at the news conference that police would not enforce the curfew with armored trucks and tear gas but would communicate with protesters and give them ample opportunity to leave. Nixon and Johnson were flanked by numerous local elected officials, including U.S. Rep. William Lacy Clay Jr., who urged Johnson to be flexible with the midnight curfew.

Among the many people shouting questions was Malik Shabazz, the president of Black Lawyers for Justice, who said that members of his group and the New Black Panther Party and the Nation of Islam had been helping to maintain order and deter protesters from violence.

"It seems to be a tight curfew line that could be a prescription for confrontation," said Shabazz, who asked unsuccessfully that the curfew's start be delayed by an hour.

Brown's death had already ignited several days of clashes with furious protesters. Tensions eased Thursday after Nixon turned oversight of the protests over to the Missouri Highway Patrol. Gone were the police in riot gear and armored vehicles, replaced by the new patrol commander who personally walked through the streets with demonstrators. But Friday night marked a resurgence of unrest.

Local officers faced strong criticism earlier in the week for their use of tear gas and rubber bullets against protesters. Johnson said one tear gas canister was deployed Friday night after the group of rioters became unruly and several officers got trapped and injured.

Wilson, the officer who shot Brown, is a six-year police veteran who had no previous complaints against him, the local police chief has said.

The Ferguson Police Department has refused to say anything about Wilson's whereabouts, and Associated Press reporters were unable to contact him at any addresses or phone numbers listed under that name in the St. Louis area.

Wilson has been on paid administrative leave since the shooting. St. Louis County prosecutor Bob McCulloch said it could be weeks before the investigation wraps up.

St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley asked Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster on Friday to take over the case, saying he did not believe McCulloch could be objective. Koster said Missouri law does not allow it unless McCulloch opts out, and McCulloch spokesman Ed Magee said the prosecutor has no plans to surrender the case.

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2 months ago

Ferguson: Calm night after highway patrol takever

For the first time this week Ferguson, Missouri was calm, but not quiet, overnight.

Hundreds of protesters still spilled out into the streets Thursday evening as police still stood guard, but this time it was a march, not the melee that played out over the four nights before.

"There is a different feel, there's not as much tension," said Pastor Michael Robinson. "I feel a great positive force that's in the air. There's a lot of hope."

For the first time since since Michael Brown, an unarmed teenager, was killed during a confrontation with local police, the gas masks and riot gear were gone and state troopers walked with angry residents in a show of unity.

Read more: http://nbcnews.to/1l8r666

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2 months ago

Ferguson: Brown was robbery suspect

Police released the name of the officer who shot and killed an unarmed teenager in Ferguson, Missouri over the weekend.

Officer Darren Wilson shot and killed 18-year-old Michael Brown.

"He's been a police officer for six years. has had no disciplinary action taken against him. he was treated for injuries that occurred on Saturday," Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson said after identifying Wilson.

Jackson explained the shooting took place as Wilson was responding to a 911 call about a strong-arm robbery of a convenience store, and released surveillance photos of the robbery.

The chief says a description of the suspect was broadcast to patrol officers just before the the confrontation between Wilson and Brown.

Read more: http://nbcnews.to/1BkhMka

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2 months ago

Ferguson: New details released

Police have released the name of the officer who shot and killed unarmed teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri over the weekend, as well as surveillance video they say shows Brown stealing from a convenience store shortly before he was shot.

Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson also confirmed that Officer Darren Wilson did not know that Brown was suspect when he confronted him.

Asked why Brown and a friend were stopped, the chief said: "Because they were walking down the middle of the street blocking traffic."

The release of the video has angered many in the community, including Brown's parents.

A statement released by the family's attorney reads: "There is nothing based on the facts that have been placed before us that can justify the execution style murder of their child by this police officer."

Read more: http://nbcnews.to/1BkhMka

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