Protesters Clash with Police, Burn Flags, Damage Business near Shaw Shooting Site

Categories: Ferguson, Police

Ray Downs
Police wore riot gear and used tear gas early Friday morning, like the officers in Ferguson during West Florissant Avenue protests.
Protesters lashed out at police on South Grand Boulevard Thursday night, injuring an officer and breaking windows near the site where an off-duty St. Louis police officer fatally shot eighteen-year-old Vonderrit D. Myers Jr. the night before.

Eight protesters were arrested after police broke up the protest around 1 a.m. with pepper spray, police said Friday morning. Five people were arrested for unlawful assembly, two for property damage and one for marijuana possession.

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St. Louis Area Police Now Have Five Fatal Officer Shootings Under Investigation for 2014

Categories: Ferguson, Police

Ray Downs
Police shootings have inspired protests across the area.
The fatal shooting of eighteen-year-old Vonderrit Myers by an off-duty St. Louis Metropolitan police officer Wednesday night has brought the number of fatal police shootings in 2014 that are currently under investigation in St. Louis city and county to five.

All five of the deceased are black men under the age of 31. Two are accused of having a gun. One had a knife, as video evidence shows. And two were unarmed.

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St. Louis County Police Staying Quiet About Video Recordings, Investigation of Protesters

Categories: Ferguson, Police

Thumbnail image for police_recording_protesters.JPG
Ray Downs
St. Louis County police officers have been investigating protesters since the Michael Brown shooting.
The St. Louis County Police Department is keeping quiet about its ongoing investigation of protesters. But they will say this: There will likely be an investigation for as long as the protests last.

That's what Lieutenant Jeff Burk, who heads the records division at the STLCPD tells Daily RFT. Burk also says that a "civil disturbance report" filed on the day Michael Brown was shot and killed by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson is being used by police as a sort of umbrella investigation to file other protester-related incidents under, including arrests.

Last week, Daily RFT filed a Sunshine request for the video recordings for three days in September that STLCPD officers were seen making of protesters. That request was denied on grounds that the recordings are part of an "active investigation" related to arrests of protesters.

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St. Louis County Police Recording Protesters As Part of Ongoing Investigation [UPDATE]

Categories: Ferguson, Police

Ray Downs
A St. Louis County police officer records protesters in front of the Ferguson Police Department.
Protesters have been recording police since the first day of the Ferguson protests -- and now, the St. Louis County Police Department are recording them as part of an "active investigation" they will give few details about.

Daily RFT submitted a Sunshine Request to obtain the videos made by police officers for three separate evenings in September in which at least one police officer was clearly seen holding a camcorder in the direction of protesters. That request was denied on grounds that the recordings are part of an open investigation into "those arrested during the protests," said Sharon Pezold, a records coordinator for the STLCPD.

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Brand-New Flordell Hills Police Department Busts Officer for Stealing Pills From Evidence

Categories: Police

Jeremy Quate, 31.
On its first official day of existence, the Flordell Hills Police Department announced it has already had to lock up one of its own officers for stealing from the evidence room.

Jeremy Quate, 31, of Belleville, Illinois, is charged with stealing a controlled substance and possession of a controlled substance after he told police he took prescription medicine from an evidence safe.

Quate was one of the six police officers scheduled to take over patrolling Flordell Hills, a St. Louis suburb with 822 residents within less than a square mile, on Wednesday. Instead, he's locked up and under investigation by the St. Louis County Police while the rest of the force hits the streets.

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Still No Answers Seven Months After Police Shoot and Kill Stephon Averyhart

Categories: Police

Stephon Averyhart
Seven months have passed since police officers from the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department shot and killed 27-year-old Stephon Averyhart during a wild chase, but the investigation is still ongoing and few details have been released. Now, the mother of the deceased wants to know why it's taking so long -- and why she has never been contacted by police since they called her to identify her son's body.

On February 12, Averyhart was fleeing police before he crashed his car into a telephone poll near the corner of Harney Avenue and Union Boulevard. He then jumped out of the car and ran as officers followed him on foot. Averyhart turned into an alley and then was shot dead by the officers. The officers say Averyhart pointed a gun at them first and a gun was found on the scene. But friends and relatives say he although he kept a gun for self-protection, he wasn't the type to shoot at police; he was just running to evade getting arrested for warrants from unpaid tickets.

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Ferguson Reduces Fines, Adds Police Review Board to "Improve Trust, Transparency"

Ray Downs
Ever since Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson shot and killed unarmed eighteen-year-old Michael Brown, one of the main topics of concern has been the deep rift between police and the community, including the city's court system and policing tactics, which residents say unfairly targets black people and overly impacts low-income people.

Some of that might change with the Ferguson City Council announcing it will make moderate policy changes in an effort to build trust within the community.

The proposed changes, announced Monday night, will include a cap of how much the city can collect for its general city operations, a citizen review board to give the community more oversight of its police department, the abolishing of several court fines, payment plans for outstanding fines and a one-month warrant recall period.

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Protests Continue for Michael Brown in Ferguson and Darren Wilson in O'Fallon

Ray Downs
O'Fallon protesters in support of Darren Wilson.
The large protests and demonstrations that were a result of eighteen-year-old Michael Brown getting shot and killed by police officer Darren Wilson have largely quieted down, but this past weekend showed that protests are still going on in the St. Louis area -- for both sides of the controversy.

In Ferguson, Lost Voices, a group of young Ferguson-area protesters who have called for an end to police brutality and vowed to permanently protest until Wilson is charged with a crime, held a sleep-in where supporters camped out all night in a parking lot behind Red's BBQ on West Florissant. Approximately 50 people, including children, participated in the overnight event, sleeping in tents that were donated to the cause.

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St. Louis County Police Hockey Team Publicly Supports Officer Darren Wilson on Facebook

While the St. Louis County Police Department investigates Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson, who shot and killed eighteen-year-old Michael Brown in August, members of the department's hockey team are dropping their gloves for the cop at the center of the controversial killing.

The county police hockey team, whose website says it is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization, plays around St. Louis and sometimes other states to have fun and raise money for charity. But lately, whoever runs the team's Facebook page has turned it into something of a fan site for Wilson, who was also known to play a little puck back in his high school days.

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Protesters Demand Improved Police Accountability at Downtown Demonstration

Ray Downs
Protesters rally in front of the Thomas Eagleton Courthouse Tuesday.
Approximately 150 protesters rallied in downtown St. Louis Tuesday afternoon to protest police brutality and announce a set of demands they want enacted by officials at the local and national level.

The demands announced by protesters centered largely on police reform and accountability. But they also included several direct demands related to the investigation of the Michael Brown shooting, including the "immediate arrest" of Darren Wilson, the Ferguson police officer who fatally shot the eighteen-year-old August 9.

"We are going to bring that gunman to justice, and I mean that," said rapper Tef Poe, a Riverfront Times contributor and a constant presence at the Ferguson protests since they began the day after the Brown shooting.

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