Missouri governor ends month-long state of emergency

ST. LOUIS - Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon has ended the state of emergency that he declared for the St. Louis area ahead of unrest over the Ferguson grand jury decision, although a demonstration temporarily shut down city hall in St. Louis.

By doing so Wednesday, Nixon removed the Missouri National Guard from duties in Ferguson, the city of St. Louis and other nearby communities.

National Guard cuts operations as Ferguson protests ease

Nixon issued his executive order on Nov. 17. Protests, including some that turned violent, broke out on Nov. 24 after St. Louis County prosecutor Bob McCulloch announced that a grand jury wouldn't indict Darren Wilson, the Ferguson police officer who shot and killed 18-year-old Michael Brown on Aug. 9.

However, protesters upset with police over their handling of demonstrations related to the Michael Brown shooting managed to shut down St. Louis City Hall.

About 75 demonstrators who marched from St. Louis police headquarters on Wednesday were locked out of City Hall. The closing also affected office workers and citizens attempting to do city business.

Several members of the city's Board of Aldermen joined protesters outside the building in support of their efforts to gain entry. No arrests were reported and the protest was peaceful.

Twelve businesses in the Ferguson area were burned during the unrest immediately after McCulloch's announcement, but Nixon credited the work of police and the National Guard in preventing any protest-related deaths.