crimesider

Michael Brown shooting: Vigil for dead teen turns violent

Last Updated Aug 11, 2014 10:40 AM EDT

FERGUSON, Mo. - A day of anger over a fatal police shooting of an unarmed black teen in suburban St. Louis turned to mayhem as people looted businesses, vandalized vehicles and confronted police in riot gear who tried to block access to parts of the city.

Additionally, Laura Hettiger, a reporter for CBS affiliate KMOV-TV, tweeted that the police chief in Ferguson claims he and the St. Louis County Police chief were shot at overnight in a Walmart parking lot.

Police told CBS affiliate KMOV-TV in St. Louis that close to 300 officers responded to the area and two officers suffered injuries throughout the night. St. Louis County Police said at least 19 different departments responded to Ferguson, arresting at least 32 people. According to police, shots were fired at a police helicopter in the area.

The tensions erupted after a candlelight vigil Sunday night for 18-year-old Michael Brown, who police said was shot multiple times Saturday after a scuffle involving the officer, Brown and another person in Ferguson, a predominantly black suburb of the city.

KMOV-TV reports at least 12 businesses near the shooting scene were looted, including a convenience store, a check-cashing store, a boutique and a small grocery store. People took items from a sporting goods store and a cellphone retailer, and carted rims away from a tire store.

TV footage showed streams of people walking from a liquor store carrying bottles of alcohol, and in some cases protesters stood atop police cars or taunted officers who stood stoic, some carrying shields and batons. Video posted online by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch showed a convenience store on fire.

A man runs out of a a store in Ferguson, Mo., as local businesses are looted and vandalized

A man runs out of a a store in Ferguson, Mo., as local businesses are looted and vandalized, Aug. 10, 2014.

AP

Witnesses reported seeing people vandalize police cars and kick in windows. Television footage showed windows busted out of a TV station van.

Police also responded to reports of shootings throughout the area. At one point, windows of a KMOV-TV live truck were smashed out by the angry crowd.

Tear gas was reportedly been used by police in some areas. Authorities set up blockades to keep people from the most looted areas.

Police struggled to catch looters because crimes were happening at several locations in Ferguson and spilling into neighboring communities, Mayor James Knowles told KTVI-TV.

St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley said there were no reports of injuries as of about 11 p.m. But there were scattered reports of assaults into the early morning.

"The small group of people are creating a huge mess," Knowles told KTVI-TV. "Contributing to the unrest that is going on is not going to help. ... We're only hurting ourselves, only hurting our community, hurting our neighbors."

Earlier Sunday, a few hundred protesters gathered outside Ferguson Police headquarters. Some marched into an adjacent police building chanting "Don't shoot me" while holding their hands in the air. Officers stood at the top of a staircase, but didn't use force; the crowd eventually left.

KMOV-TV reported that internet vigilante group Anonymous hacked into the city of Ferguson's email system last night and made it unusable for a time.

In a statement, the group said they are "outraged at this cold blooded murder of a young teen."

County Police Chief Jon Belmar said the shooting occurred after an officer encountered Brown and another man outside an apartment complex in Ferguson.

Belmar said one of the men pushed the officer into his squad car and a struggle began. Belmar said at least one shot was fired from the officer's gun inside the police car. Ferguson Police Chief Tom Jackson said authorities were still sorting out what happened inside the police car. It was not clear if Brown was the man who struggled with the officer.

The struggle spilled out into the street, where Brown was shot multiple times. Belmar said the exact number of shots wasn't known and that all shell casings at the scene matched the officer's gun. Police were investigating why the officer shot Brown, who police have confirmed was unarmed.

Jackson said the second person has not been arrested or charged and it wasn't clear if he was armed.

Dorian Johnson told CBS News' Julian Johnson that he was with Michael Brown during the incident, and he had a different account. Johnson said the officer pulled up next to the two teens and exchanged words with them before choking Brown and trying to pull him into the squad car. The officer, he said, then exited his car, fired a shot and chased after Brown, who was running for his life.

"We wasn't causing no harm to nobody [sic]," Johnson said. "We had no weapons on us at all.

"He shot again and once my friend felt that shot he turned around and put his hands in the air and started to get down, and the officer still approached with his weapon drawn and fired several more shots."

Ferguson Police Chief Tom Jackson told KSDK-TV there's no video footage of the shooting from the apartment complex, or from any police cruiser dashboard cameras or body-worn cameras that the department recently bought but hasn't yet put to use.

ferguson missouri

A crowd gathers in Ferguson, Mo., on Saturday, August 9, 2014, after an officer-involved shooting left an apparently unarmed black teenager dead.

KMOV
ferguson missouri

A crowd gathers in Ferguson, Mo., on Saturday, August 9, 2014, after an officer-involved shooting left an apparently unarmed black teenager dead.

KMOV

Jackson said blood samples were taken from Brown and the officer who shot him. Toxicology tests take weeks to complete.

Brown's mother, Lesley McSpadden, said she didn't understand why police didn't subdue her high school graduate son with a club or stun gun, and that the officer involved should be fired and prosecuted.

"I would like to see him go to jail with the death penalty," she said, fighting back tears.

The killing drew criticism from some civil rights leaders, who referred to the 2012 racially charged shooting of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin by a Florida neighborhood watch organizer who was acquitted of murder charges.

"We're outraged because yet again a young African-American man has been killed by law enforcement," said John Gaskin, who serves on both the St. Louis County and national boards of directors for the NAACP.

St. Louis County Police Department is in charge of the investigation, and Dooley said he will request an FBI investigation. The U.S. Justice Department said Attorney General Eric Holder instructed staff to monitor developments.

The race of the officer involved in the shooting has not been disclosed. He has been placed on paid administrative leave.

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