St Louis rocked by second night of protests

St Louis rocked by second night of protests
By Catherine Hardy with REUTERS
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Clashes between demonstrators and riot police marred the end of what had been a largely-peaceful second day of protest rallies in the US city of St Louis.


Clashes between demonstrators and riot police marred the end of what had been a largely-peaceful second day of protest rallies in the US city of St Louis.

It comes after the acquittal of a white police officer in the fatal shooting of a black man.

Protesters took to St Louis streets after judge delivered not guilty verdict in officer-involved shooting case. More

— NBC News (@NBCNews) 16 septembre 2017

What happened?

Several hundred people gathered near Washington University after dark as the main rallies and marches wound down on Saturday evening.

Violence broke out between around 100 protestors and riot police who ordered them to disperse.

Shop and restaurant windows were smashed and rubbish bins were thrown.

Police declared the scene an unlawful assembly and threatened to use tear gas.

Were there any arrests?

Yes. At least eight.

There have been a total of 33 arrests. 10 police officers have been hurt.

Rock band U2 canceled a concert scheduled for Saturday in St. Louis, and singer Ed Sheeran did the same for his show on Sunday, citing security concerns.

Why did the protests start?

They began peacefully on Friday after Circuit Judge Timothy Wilson acquitted former St Louis police officer Jason Stockley of first-degree murder in the shooting death of Anthony Lamar Smith, who was 24.

But the gatherings ended in violence on both Friday and Saturday nights.

What was the case about?

Anthony Lamar Smith was shot five times in his car after attempting to elude Stockley and his partner, who had pursued them after an alleged drug deal, officials say.

Prosecutors say that, during the pursuit, Stockley could be heard saying on an internal police car video that he was going to kill Smith.

Stockley believed that Smith was armed, defence lawyers said, and a gun was found in the car.

Prosecutors argued that Stockley had planted the weapon and the gun had only Stockley’s DNA.

What happened on Friday?

An estimated 600 chanting protesters marched from the courthouse through downtown St Louis.

Some were holding “Black Lives Matter” signs.

Windows were broken and bottles thrown at officers, who responded with tear gas and rubber bullets.


Rocks and paint were also thrown at the home of St Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson.

PHOTO: A broken window is seen at home of St. Louis mayor, as protesters gather in aftermath of #STLVerdict (Photo by Jeff Roberson)

— NBC News (@NBCNews) 16 septembre 2017

What they are saying

“We had been getting such a good turn out earlier and it was a peaceful protest. But then a bunch of people came and decided to be disruptive,” – 32-year-old protestor Jomar Jackson.

“I don’t understand how this would bring the poor guy back to life,” – flower shop owner Elisheva Heit.

Tonight’s St. Louis Show Cancelled
‘We cannot risk fans’ safety.’ Live Nation statement.

— U2 (@U2) 16 septembre 2017

“Deeply saddened at what has happened in St Louis and having to cancel our show tonight,” – U2 singer Bono said in a post on Instagram.

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