Violent St. Louis Protests Over Officer Acquittal

For the second consecutive night, peaceful daytime protests over the acquittal of a white former police officere in the shooting death of a black suspect descended into late-night violence in the St. Louis area with broken windows and thrown rocks.

For the second consecutive night, peaceful daytime protests descended into late-night violence with broken windows and thrown rocks, water bottles and garbage can lids following Friday’s acquittal of a white former police officer in the shooting death of a black suspect, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports. Shortly before 11 p.m. Saturday, a small group of protesters threw chunks of concrete at police and broke windows at numerous businesses in the Delmar Loop area of University City, which adjoins St. Louis. A chair was thrown through the window of a Starbucks. One protester was seen hitting a police SUV with a hammer. Police made more than a half-dozen arrests witnessed by reporters, including a protester who was carried away by officers by his arms and legs.

As the chaos escalated, scores of police officers in riot gear pushed forward against the demonstrators, about two hours after daytime protest organizers had congratulated their followers on keeping their demonstrations peaceful. By 11:30, about 200 police officers had pushed most of the protesters out of the area and the violence and vandalism appeared to be dissipating. The sidewalks along the vibrant area of restaurants and shops were strewn with glass from broken windows.  Earlier in the day, hundreds of protesters marched through the Delmar Loop near nightfall Saturday, as St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson appealed to residents for calm going into the second night of protests. “These are not the images we want to see of our city,” Krewson said, referring to violence in the city’s Central West End the night before that included damage to her house. “We have some work to do here.” Cori Bush, a social worker and activist who is running for Congress, helped lead the marchers early Saturday evening. “The message is simple: stop killing us,” she said. “Black folks say, stop killing us.”