FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) — Smoke billowed from burned-out buildings and sidewalks were strewn with broken glass Tuesday morning after Ferguson erupted over a grand jury’s decision not to indict a white police officer in the killing of unarmed black 18-year-old Michael Brown.
Firefighters were dousing the blackened remains of some businesses and at least one was still ablaze. Some Ferguson stores that weren’t burned had smashed display windows, but the streets of the St. Louis suburb were mostly clear.
Monday night’s protests were far more destructive than any of those that followed Brown’s Aug. 9 death, with more than a dozen businesses badly damaged or destroyed. Authorities reported hearing hundreds of gunshots, which for a time prevented fire crews from fighting the flames.
There were 61 arrests in Ferguson overnight, many for burglary and trespassing, St. Louis County Police spokesman Brian Schellman said. There were 21 arrests in St. Louis, where protesters broke some store windows along South Grand Avenue, St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay said.
Jon Belmar, chief of the St. Louis County police, said that unless his agency could bring in 10,000 officers, “I don’t think we can prevent folks who really are intent on destroying a community.”
At least eight people were injured during the overnight protests, including two people who were admitted to Barnes-Jewish Hospital for treatment of undisclosed injuries. That hospital treated and released five people and Saint Louis University Hospital treated and released another. Several other hospitals didn’t immediately respond to phone messages and emails seeking comment….
By JIM SALTER and DAVID A. LIEB – Associated Press –