Ferguson Live: Dad of unarmed black teen killed by white cop says son was 'crucified'

Ferguson Live: The case relates to the death of 18-year-old Michael Brown who was shot dead by a white police officer Darren Wilson in August in Ferguson.

Devparna Acharya November 27, 2014 14:26:47 IST
Ferguson Live: Dad of unarmed black teen killed by white cop says son was 'crucified'

2.17 pm: 18-year-old Michael's family crushed by grand jury verdict

Speaking to NBC News, the family of the 18-year-old Michael Brown, who was shot dead by white police officer Darren Wilson, said that they were 'crushed' by the verdict of the grand jury which had decided not to indict the officer.

According to a report in the BBC, Michael's father said that his son was 'crucified' while the boy's mother said that the white cop was 'disrespectful.'

Ferguson Live Dad of unarmed black teen killed by white cop says son was crucified

Michael Brown's father. AFP

9.00 am: London protests infront of US embassy

According to a report in the AFP, About a thousand Britons were seen protesting outside the United States embassy in London in sympathy with demonstrations across the US over the killing of a black teenager by a white police officer.

The decision not to prosecute the officer for shooting dead unarmed 18-year-old Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, sparked anger and racially-charged unrest in cities across the United States this week.

The AFP report further added that the London protesters held signs reading "black lives matter" and chanted "hands up don't shoot", the slogan adopted by protesters in the US.
Relatives of black men killed by police in Britain addressed the crowd on Wednesday.

"We need to send a message to Mike Brown's family," said Carol Duggan, the aunt of Mark Duggan, a 29-year-old black man whose shooting by police in 2011 was followed by riots.

"We feel the pain, we know the pain, of losing somebody at the hands of the police. That is why we stand in solidarity with the community of Ferguson. I feel they are very strong and brave people," she was quoted as saying by the news agency.

Some protesters carried candles, and a minute of silence was held in honour of those killed by police around the world.

Marcia Rigg, the sister of Sean Rigg, a 40-year-old black musician who died in police custody in London in 2008, told the crowd that she did not support arson and looting but that she understood people's rage.

"People around the world understand the frustration and anger that the people are feeling when our loved ones are murdered on the streets," Rigg said.

8.29 am: Obama's Justice Department mulling whether to bring federal civil rights charges against white cop Wilson

United States President Barack Obama's Justice Department is probing the Ferguson shooting as it considers whether to bring federal civil rights charges against the officer and the police department.

"The sad fact is that it brings up issues that we've been struggling with in this country for a long, long time," said Matthew Green, an associate professor of politics at the Catholic University of America.

"These are not problems and issues that are going to get resolved by one President in the remainder of his term."

Wilson said his conscience was clear. He told ABC News that there was nothing he could have done differently that would have prevented Brown's death. But the parents of the slain teenager said they did not accept the officer's version of the events.

"I don't believe a word of it," Michael Brown's mother Lesley McSpadden told CBS This Morning on Wednesday.

7.57 am: Amid protests, Russia slams US for racial bias

Russia on Wednesday slammed the United States for its 'hypocrisy' as rioting and protests scaled in Ferguson, Missouri. Russia pointed out that the demonstrations in US against the killing of the unarmed black teenager was evidence that its detractors in Washington were hypocrites and were in no position to lecture Moscow on human rights.

A report in the Reuters said that in two statements on the unrest, the Russian Foreign Ministry said the United States should "focus on large-scale domestic problems with safeguarding human rights" rather than preach to others.

"Such a massive explosion of public indignation and the disproportionate reaction of law enforcement bodies confirm again that this is no isolated incident but a systemic flaw in American democracy, which has failed to overcome a deep racial split, discrimination and inequality," Reuters quoted the ministry as saying.

7.50 am: Over 400 arrested as Ferguson protests spread to other US cities

According to a report in the Reuters, National Guard troops and police aimed to head off a third night of violence on Wednesday in Ferguson, Missouri, as more than 400 people were arrested in the St. Louis suburb and around United States in unrest after a white policeman was cleared in the killing of an unarmed black teenager.

There have been protests in Boston, New York, Los Angeles, Dallas, Atlanta and other cities decrying Monday's grand jury decision not to indict officer Darren Wilson in the 9 August  shooting death of 18-year-old Michael Brown in a case that has touched off a debate about race relations in the United States.

Ferguson, a predominately black city, has been hit by two nights of rioting, looting and arson with some businesses burned to the ground, but authorities say an increased security presence on Tuesday night helped quell the violence.

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4.02 pm: Seattle, New York, Cleveland, Michigan, Georgia, Wisconsin protest against jury's verdict

According to latest reports, peaceful demonstrators marched in Seattle and Albuquerque and disrupted traffic in St. Louis, New York and Cleveland. Rallies also formed in Michigan, Maine, Georgia, Wisconsin and other states after a St. Louis County grand jury decided not to indict Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of 18-year-old Michael Brown.

For many, Brown's shooting death on Aug. 9 recalled other troubling encounters with law enforcement. The refrain "hands up, don't shoot" became a rallying cry for protests over police killings nationwide.

Thousands of people marched for a second night in Manhattan, gathering in Union Square before splitting into several smaller groups, chanting "No justice, No peace." Some held signs saying "Jail killer cops" and "Justice for Mike Brown."

In Los Angeles, protesters flooded the U.S. 101 freeway Tuesday night, carrying barricades that they laid across lanes and bringing traffic to a halt.

A rally in Minneapolis turned scary when a car struck a protester and then burst through a pack of others who surrounded it. A woman suffered minor injuries, said a report in Associated Press.

Several hundred people marched down a freeway ramp to block rush-hour traffic while protesting the Missouri developments and Saturday's fatal shooting by an officer of 12-year-old Tamir Rice of Cleveland, who had a pellet gun that looked like a real firearm.

Another report added that protesters disrupted downtown traffic for several hours by blocking major intersections, an interstate highway and a Mississippi River bridge connecting the city to Illinois.

Riot police arrested several demonstrators who sat in the middle of Interstate 44 near the Edward Jones Dome. They used pepper spray to disperse the crowd.

Several hundred people from historically black schools Morehouse College and Clark Atlanta University in Georgia held peaceful demonstrations. But as the night wore on, some groups split off and tried to block a freeway, and police said some windows were broken.

3.22 pm: Prosecutor in Ferguson case comes under scrutiny

According to an Associated Press report, the prosecutor in the Ferguson case criticized the media.

He spoke about witness testimony that didn't match physical evidence. And he did it on Tuesday night, as a city already on edge waited to learn if a grand jury would indict a white Ferguson police officer in the shooting death of an unarmed black 18-year-old.

St. Louis County Prosecutor Bob McCulloch — whose impartiality has been questioned since soon after Michael Brown was killed by Officer Darren Wilson on 9 August  — has come under renewed scrutiny since he appeared before television cameras to announce that the grand jury would not indict Wilson.

A defensive McCulloch repeatedly cited what he said were inconsistencies and erroneous witness accounts. He never mentioned that Brown was unarmed, said the Associated Press report.

3.00 pm: Protesters burn police car, 44 arrested

According to latest reports, protesters burned a police car, heaved rocks and bottles at officers and broke windows at City Hall on Tuesday night in the St. Louis suburb where Michael Brown was killed on 9 August. Although there were 44 arrests, officials said the scene was much calmer than the night before, when 12 commercial buildings were burned.

The presence of National Guard reinforcements was credited for helping to keep the peace. By early Wednesday, the streets were mostly clear, and Guard troops were stationed at various businesses around the city's downtown, an Associated Press report said.

12.53 pm: Police, protesters clash

After reports of peaceful protests and rallies across the US, a Fox News reported incidents of clashes between the protesters and the police in Ferguson. According to the report, protesters started by pelting stones on the police officials before official vehicles started inching closer.

The police then dispersed tear bombs. Protesters were told to stay on the sidewalk and if they enter the streets, they would face unlawful-gathering arrests, the report added.

12.21 pm: Second day of rallies across US

Protesters disrupted traffic for several hours in downtown St. Louis by blocking major intersections, an interstate highway and a Mississippi River bridge connecting the city to Illinois.

Riot police arrested several demonstrators who sat in the middle of an interstate highway. They used pepper spray to disperse the crowd.

Activists had planned protests even before the nighttime announcement that Wilson would not be charged in 18-year-old Michael Brown’s shooting death. The racially charged case in Ferguson has inflamed tensions and reignited debates over police-community relations even in cities hundreds of miles from the predominantly black St. Louis suburb.

In New York City, hundreds of people marched for a second night in Manhattan, gathering in Union Square before splitting up into several smaller groups, chanting “No justice, No peace.” Some held signs saying “Jail killer cops” and “Justice for Mike Brown.”

Protests have so far been large but mostly peaceful, with just two arrests, including that of a man who threw a jar of fake blood that struck Police Commissioner William Bratton. Police said protesters briefly shut down the Brooklyn Bridge and one of the three spans of the Robert F. Kennedy Bridge, formerly known as the Triborough Bridge.

Ferguson Live Dad of unarmed black teen killed by white cop says son was crucified

Protesters attack a police vehicle in Ferguson, Missouri late on Monday. Reuters

Renewed plans for marches and rallies in Oakland, California, came as officials were still cleaning up after scores of people hurled bottles, broke windows, set small fires and vandalized a police car.

At least 40 people were arrested in Monday night’s melee that escalated after some protesters shut down traffic on a major highway in the San Francisco Bay Area. A police spokeswoman said several officers were injured, but she did not elaborate.

In Washington, one group lay on the ground to stage a “die—in” in front of Metro police headquarters. The group planned to occupy various buildings in the district over 28 hours.

“Mike Brown is an emblem (of a movement). This country is at its boiling point,” said Ethan Jury, a protester in Philadelphia, where hundreds marched. “How many people need to die? How many black people need to die?”

In Los Angeles, demonstrations remained mostly small and peaceful, but about 200 people marching toward downtown briefly shut down Interstate 110, City News Service reported.

After midnight, officers wearing riot gear fired hard—foam projectiles into the ground to disperse about 50 protesters downtown, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Police Chief Charlie Beck said Tuesday there were no injuries and no property damage during hours—long demonstrations across LA. Three people were arrested.

After a night of rallies in Chicago, dozens of protesters upset with the grand jury’s decision camped out at the doors of Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s office inside City Hall and planned to remain there throughout the day and overnight. They were holding teach—ins on political issues and “healing circles” for people to discuss experiences with violence in Chicago. -- Associated Press

12.18 pm: Protesters told to stay off Ferguson streets

The police have ordered protesters off the streets of Ferguson after what had been several hours of largely peaceful demonstrations, reported Associated Press.

Protesters had gathered outside the Ferguson Police Department on Tuesday for a second night following a grand jury decision not to indict Officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of Michael Brown.

After several arrests, there was a far different feel on Tuesday than Monday night, which saw arson, looting and rioting.

According to a report from the Associated Press, several hours after nightfall, a group of people broke off from the crowd and marched down from the police department. A police car was torched outside city hall. Police quickly used a fire extinguisher to douse the flames and released tear gas.

Officers soon took to loudspeakers to tell protesters to leave the streets or face arrest.

11.36 am: I did my job right, says Darren Wilson

According to a report in the Associated Press, Police officer Darren Wilson on Tuesday said he couldn't have done anything differently in his confrontation with Michael Brown to have prevented the 18-year-old's shooting death.

Wilson made his first public statements on Tuesday during an interview with ABC News' George Stephanopoulos, reported Associated Press.

He told Stephanopoulos he has a clean conscience because "I know I did my job right."

11.21 am: Ferguson braces for more protests

Missouri's governor ordered hundreds more state militia into a St. Louis suburb on Tuesday after a night of violent protests over a grand jury decision's not to indict a white police officer in the killing of an unarmed black 18-year-old, a case that has inflamed racial tensions in the US.

Lawyers for for the family of the teenager, Michael Brown, criticized the jury's decision as rigged but appealed for peace. Police officer Darren Wilson, in his first public comments, defended his actions, said a report in the Associated Press.

The decision announced on Thursday night means Wilson faces no state criminal charges in the 9 August shooting, which reignited debates over relations between police and minority communities, even in cities far from Ferguson, the St. Louis suburb where Brown was killed.

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3.12 pm: Protests go beyond Ferguson

New York City, Philadelphia, Oakland, Washington DC and several other major cities in the US protested against the jury verdict in the Michael Brown shooting case.

The cop, Darren Wilson, who shot the unarmed black teenager on 9 August was given orders to walk free as the jury did not find any probable cause to file any charge against the officer.

Latest reports coming in quoted St Louis County police chief Jon Belmar as saying that no shots were fired by police during violent protests that erupted in Ferguson, Missouri, on Monday night.

According to a report in the CNN, a crowd wound its way through the city, surging to more than 1,000 in Times Square before heading toward the Upper West Side in New York City.

Miguel Marquez of CNN tweeted out.

In Philadelphia and Oakland, according to the CNN, shop owners had signs of "We support Michael Brown," as marchers took to the streets.

According to the CNN report, in Washington DC, people assembled outside the White House, with some of them lying down on Pennsylvania Avenue.

In Los Angeles, which witnessed riots in 1992, silent protesters staged a similar demonstration. This tweet from David Rayfield shows a photo of 18-year-old Michael's distraught father.

The Chicago Tribune reported that some 200 protesters gathered outside the city's police headquarters, chanting "We are Mike Brown!" and "I am Mike Brown!" They also carried signs, the paper reported, bearing phrases like "Won't stop 'til we get justice," "Killer pigs must pay," and "Stop the racist killer cops."

2.28 pm: At least 12 buildings set on fire in violence-torn Ferguson

According to latest reports, at least dozen buildings in Ferguson were set ablaze by angry protesters. The mob destroyed most of the 12 buildings in a wave of civil unrest following a grand jury's decision not to indict a white police officer for fatally shooting an unarmed black teenager in August, Reuters quoted the police as saying on Tuesday.

Jon Belmar St. Louis County Police Chief also said he personally had heard about 150 gunshots fired during a night of looting, arson and clashes between demonstrators and police that resulted in at least 29 people arrested.

The Reuters report did not mention anyone being seriously injured, Belmar said the disturbances on Monday night and early on Tuesday morning were "much worse" than the unrest that erupted in the immediate aftermath of the shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown by police officer Darren Wilson on 9 August.

2.13 pm: 16 arrested for trespassing and looting

St Louis police arrested 16 people for vandalism and looting late on Monday. Incidents of violence were reported not only from Ferguson, Missouri but also from other major US cities like New York, Chicago, Seattle, Los Angeles, Oakland and Washington, D.C. over the case of a white cop Darren Wilson shooting a unarmed black teenager dead.

2.08 pm: Violence flares in major US cities

Violence continued unabated after the grand jury let the white cop Darren Wilson walk free who fatally shot unarmed black teenager Michael Brown in August. Gunshots rang out and buildings burned in a Midwestern suburb. The jury's verdict sparked fresh wave of racially tinged violence, Reuters reported.

The Reuters report added that the protests were also staged in New York, Chicago, Seattle, Los Angeles, Oakland and Washington, D.C. over a case that has highlighted long-standing racial tensions not just in predominantly black Ferguson but across the United States.

Ferguson Live Dad of unarmed black teen killed by white cop says son was crucified

Reuters image.

Angry crowds gathered around the police department in Ferguson after the grand jury said there was no probable cause to charge officer Darren Wilson with any crime in the death of 18-year-old Michael Brown, whose family also called for calm.

St Louis police reported heavy gunfire late on Monday in the area near where Brown was shot and killed on Aug. 9. Storefront windows were smashed, and fires devoured buildings including a beauty shop and a pizza parlor in two stretches of town.

Police fired volleys of tear gas and flash-bang canisters in response to the protests, a repeat of similar unrest that erupted in the immediate aftermath of the shooting.

1.15 pm: Looting and violence continued on streets

The officers lobbed smoke, pepper spray and tear gas from inside armored vehicles to disperse the crowd which gathered outside Ferguson police department, according to a report in the Associated Press.

Multiple fires burned early on Tuesday at local businesses, including at storage facility, auto parts stores and a beauty supply shop.

According to latest report from BBC, St Louis county police chief Jon Belmar said that the violence in Ferguson is "worse than the worst night in August" - when the first protests erupted over the shooting of Michael Brown.

12. 35 pm: Cop shot in Ferguson

Latest update from Reuters said that a policeman was shot and wounded in University City, a St. Louis suburb near Ferguson, Missouri, though it was unclear if the shooting was related to street protests over the grand jury's decision in the Michael Brown case, police said.

The officer was shot in the arm, and he is expected to recover, but the circumstances of the shooting were not immediately available, and a search for the suspect was under way, the St. Louis County Police Department said in a message on Twitter.

11.26 am: US issues flight restrictions into Ferguson

Amid unrest in Ferguson after a grand jury's decision of not indicting Darren Wilson in Brown case, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA ) has restricted the path of some flights into Lambert-St. Louis International Airport, an Associated Press report said.

According to an advisory posted late on Monday, planes were being rerouted out of an at least 3-mile (4.8-kilometer) area near Ferguson. The reason cited was "to provide a safe environment for law enforcement activities."

 

11.15 am: Protests erupt Los Angeles, Cleveland, New York

An Associated Press report said that demonstrators vandalized police cars, hugged barricades and taunted officers with expletives late on Monday while police fired smoke canisters and pepper spray. Gunshots were heard on the streets.

But police told Associated Press that gatherings were mostly peaceful immediately following Monday's announcement.

The report added that almost 100 people holding signs that read "The People Say Guilty!" blocked an intersection in downtown Oakland, California, after a line of police officers stopped them from getting on a highway on-ramp. Minutes earlier, some of the protesters lay on the ground while others outlined their bodies in chalk. A similar scene unfolded in Seattle as dozens of police officers watched.

Several hundred people marched through downtown Philadelphia with a large contingent of police nearby.

"Mike Brown is an emblem (of a movement). This country is at its boiling point," said Ethan Jury, a protester in Philadelphia. "How many people need to die? How many black people need to die?"

Several hundred people who had gathered in Manhattan's Union Square to watch the announcement marched peacefully to Times Square after the family of Eric Garner, a Staten Island man killed by a police chokehold earlier this year, joined actvist Reverend Al Sharpton at a speech lamenting the grand jury's decision.

In Los Angeles, which was rocked by riots in 1992 after the acquittal of police officers in the videotaped beating of Rodney King, police officers were told to remain on duty until released by their supervisors. About 100 people gathered in Leimert Park while others held a small news conference demanding changes in police policies.

Twitterati was abuzz with journalists posting pictures of protests taking place in Ferguson, Washington, New York and Los Angeles.

At least a dozen protesters at Cleveland's Public Square held signs on Monday afternoon and chanted "Hands up, don't shoot." The slogan has become a rallying cry since the Ferguson shooting.

10.37 am: Ferguson erupts as cop allowed to walk free

Gunshots rang out and police lobbed tear gas at an angry crowd that threw bottles outside the Ferguson Police Department in suburban St. Louis after a grand jury decided not to indict a white officer in the shooting death of an unarmed black teen, Reuters reported.

The case relates to the death of 18-year-old Michael Brown who was shot dead by a white police officer Darren Wilson in August.

Hundreds of protesters, many of them breaking down in tears, gathered in front of the police station in Ferguson where officer Wilson was based chanting: "These killer cops have got to go," reports added.

Brown's family asked protestors to be peaceful, PTI reported.

Ferguson Live Dad of unarmed black teen killed by white cop says son was crucified

AP

"While we understand that many others share our pain, we ask that you channel your frustration in ways that will make a positive change," the family said in a statement.

A report in the Associated Press added that the police departments in several big US cities said they were bracing for large demonstrations with the potential for violence. Thousands of people protested from Los Angeles to New York, leading marches, waving signs and shouting chants of "Hands Up! Don't Shoot," the slogan that has become a rallying cry in protests over police killings across the country, the report further said.

Obama appeals for calm

An angry mob poured into the streets of Ferguson within minutes of news that a grand jury decided not to indict police officer Darren Wilson in the death of unarmed teen Michael Brown, whose fatal shooting sparked weeks of demonstrations and exposed deep racial tension between African-Americans and police, an Associated Press report said.

The report added that Obama said from the White House that Americans need to accept the grand jury's decision.

"We are a nation built on the rule of law, so we need to accept that this decision was the grand jury's to make," Associated Press quoted Obama as saying. He said it was understandable that some Americans would be "deeply disappointed — even angered," but echoed Brown's parents in calling for any protests to be peaceful.

Speaking to Reuters, one of the residents said: "They need to understand that when you put your son in the ground, that's a pain that you can never overcome." The  40-year-old teacher's assistant added, "People are trying to process it. I think once they process it they will continue to burn and loot because they're angry."

12.24 pm: This is what white cop Darren Wilson told the grand jury

Darren Wilson, the white cop who shot the unarmed 18-year-old teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri,told the grand jury that he was on the day shift on the fateful day of 9 August. News website Mother Jones released the entire transcript and you can read it here.

Lawyers for Darren Wilson say the officer followed his training and the law when he shot and killed Michael Brown in August, Reuters reports.

"We recognise that many people will want to second-guess the grand jury's decision. We would encourage anyone who wants to express an opinion do so in a respectful and peaceful manner," the lawyers said, in a statement.

No probable cause to file charge against cop, says jury

The grand jury, comprising nine white and three black members, began meeting in late August and heard evidence that included witnesses called by the prosecution as well as a private pathologist hired by the Brown family to review the shooting. Nine jurors needed to agree to bring charges, Reuters reported.

"They determined that no probable cause exists to file any charge against officer Wilson," St Louis county prosecutor Bob McCulloch told reporters in Clayton, Missouri, the St Louis suburb where the grand jury met.

The report further added that angry crowd of several hundreds gathered outside the Ferguson police department ahead of the news, and many began to scream angrily as the news of the grand jury's decision was read.

"Murderers, you're nothing but murderers," one woman shouted through a megaphone at officers clad in riot gear. "Stinking murderers."

A group of protesters briefly mobbed a police car, threw rocks and knocked its windows, prompting a group of officers clad in riot gear to advance.

Brown's family said they were "profoundly disappointed" by the grand jury's finding.

Brown family's lawyers said that Michael was trying to surrender when he was shot, while police officer Darren Wilson's supporters said he opened fire fearing for his life. Brown was shot at least six times, Reuters report added. A journalist from US Chris McDaniel tweeted this following the verdict:

Brown was suspected of having stolen cigars from a nearby convenience store shortly before the incident. Brown and his friend were walking down the street when Wilson approached them. Although in August the police had said that Wilson was unaware of the robbery at that time.

Officer Wilson's fatal shooting of Brown on 9 August after confrontation sparked a fierce debate over how police treat young African-American men and focused attention on long-simmering racial tensions in Ferguson and around the US, four decades after the 1960s civil rights movement. Police were criticized for responding to protests with armored vehicles and tear gas, added a report from Associated Press.

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