The streets near Ferguson were literally on fire Thursday night with protesters chanting for the death of Officer Darren Wilson, the cop who fatally shot Michael Brown. In the Shaw neighborhood for a second night, they vandalized homes, committed assaults, blocked traffic and threw knives at police. This is hot on the heels of the shooting of a black teen with a lengthy criminal record on Wednesday.
Police say felon Vonderrit D. Myers fired three shots at a white officer before being shot and killed. Myers’ parents maintain that he was unarmed at the time of the shooting but Myers’ had a felony gun conviction on his record and was wearing an ankle monitor while a stolen 9mm Ruger was found at the scene.
Despite all of the evidence that the shooting was justified, the crowd remained undeterred. Seemingly oblivious or unconcerned with the facts of the Myers case, the protesters have used this latest police shooting as a springboard to fuel more unrest.
The protesters have been demanding the indictment of Darren Wilson over the past two days. However on Thursday night they became more volatile, calling for the officer’s death and marching through “wealthy,” “white” neighborhoods, as USA Today reporter Yamiche Alcindor, who was on the scene, reported.
Protesters chanting: “Who do you want? #DarrenWilson ! How do you want him? Dead!”
— Yamiche Alcindor (@Yamiche) October 10, 2014
As tempers flared they physically assaulted at least one reporter.
Some guy asked what I was tweeting and I said nothing. He basically but me in a headlock and asked to get my phone. I said no — Valerie Schremp Hahn (@valeriehahn) October 10, 2014
They also took to burning American flags on the street drawing the ire of much of the public.
The federal government lent the community of Ferguson the Dept. of Justice to do their bidding yet they burn the flag pic.twitter.com/bq1ZBrjbJd
— Joe Walsh (@WalshFreedom) October 10, 2014
— Sin Mior (@SinMior) October 10, 2014
By the end of Thursday night St. Louis police were in full riot gear and in the midst of a standoff with the angry mob.
— Paul Hampel (@phampel) October 10, 2014
Protesters are now walking up Flora Place. Chant: “No justice, no sleep.” — Yamiche Alcindor (@Yamiche) October 10, 2014
Violence and unrest will never be the path to find justice. Let’s hope and pray that cooler heads ultimately prevail.
Editor’s note: An original version of this article said the activity took place in Ferguson. It has been corrected to reflect that what took place happened in nearby St. Louis.