ST. LOUIS (AA) – Faith leaders led hundreds of protesters on a march on the Ferguson Police Department for a fourth day of protests here Monday.
Familiar chants of “No justice, no peace,” and “Hey hey, ho ho, these killer cops have got to go,” filled the air as demonstrators walked blocks to the police station from a nearby church.
Organizers used bullhorns to read aloud the names of youth slain in confrontations with police officers as a steady rain turned into a gradual downpour during the walk.
March leaders demanded that police standing just a few feet away repent for the killing of Michael Brown, and other acts of police violence. Their advances were met with mixed reactions as some officers engaged with clergy while others stoically looked on.
A small group of protesters breached the initially sparse police line, and advanced on the front door of the station, but did not enter.
As police moved back, and were replaced with officers clad in riot gear, the crowd split into two, with a group openly committing themselves to possible arrest taking the lead, while the majority stayed back. Further “actions” are expected throughout the day.
Mass demonstrations that saw thousands descend on St. Louis and its suburbs began Friday and continued throughout the weekend. Sunday night, activists and students marched through the city and on to the campus of St. Louis University where they occupied an area around a central clock tower.
The protests are part of four days of planned action that organizers have called “Ferguson October” following the shooting death of unarmed black teen Michael Brown, 18, by white police officer Darren Wilson in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson in August. Brown’s death set off weeks of mass protests that drew thousands to the area, and which have since continued at a smaller level.
The protests have been largely peaceful, but authorities said 17 were arrested overnight Saturday for unlawful assembly outside of a gas station.
Among protesters’ demands is the indictment of Wilson for Brown’s death.
Vonderrit Myers, also 18, was shot and killed by an off-duty officer last Wednesday. It was the fourth shooting of a young black male by police in the area in two months.
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