Friday, September 19, 2014

Police say Black male shot himself in back while handcuffed, parents demand answers


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Vanessa White, from left, and Victor White, Sr. listen as attorney Carol Powell-Lexing speaks during a news conference in New Iberia, La., Aug. 27, about the shooting of Victor White III. Authorities say 22-year-old Victor White III died on March 2 in the back seat of an Iberia Parish Sheriff’s Offi ce car, with his hands bound behind his back. State police say the fi ndings of an investigation into the death of White III are leading detectives to conclude he was not shot by police.

NEW ORLEANS - The family of a 22-year-old Black man, their attorneys and Rev. Al Sharpton held a press conference Sept. 4, expressing outrage and refuting claims by police that Victor White III committed suicide while handcuffed in back of a police vehicle.

Attorney Carol Powell-Lexing, front left, and Vanessa White, front right, Kandice Williams, second row left, and Victor White Sr., second row right, and other people walk to the Iberia Parish Court House for a news conference in New Iberia, La., Aug. 27. Photo: AP/Wide World photos

At the press conference and rally held at Southern University A & M College in Baton Rouge, they also called on the federal government to open an independent investigation into the shooting which occurred on March 3.

“Right now we are very upset at this point, and it’s a struggle because we still don’t have an answer. We don’t know the truth and the truth is being hidden right now,” the young man’s father, Rev. Victor White, Sr. told The Final Call in a telephone interview before the rally at the historically Black college.

The younger Victor White had a loving family, good life and was looking forward to so much in his future, he would never commit suicide, his parents have said. Yet, police in New Iberia, Louisiana situated 148 miles from New Orleans insisted for at least five months that while handcuffed and after two pat-searches, Victor produced a gun and shot himself in the back of a cruiser.

Disbelief, doubt and suspicion
When he first heard reports his son committed suicide, anger set in said Rev. White. His son just had too much to live for, he added. “He was full of life, energetic, vigorous. He could light up a room. He was a hardworking individual. He’d gotten a job. He was working, getting ready to purchase him a vehicle and an apartment,” said the grief-stricken father.

His son was working on his future with his girlfriend and their then six-month-old daughter, who’s now a year old, Rev. White continued. His son was involved in church where he played the drums and where he was ordained as a Junior Deacon at 10-years-old. “He just had so much going on,” Rev. White said. “We really want to see that the truth comes out, that my son’s name be cleared of trying to commit a suicide.”

His wife Vanessa White told The Final Call the entire family is certainly taking Victor’s death very hard right now. They want answers and they want justice, she said.

Vanessa and the Rev. Victor White Sr. look on as Tallahassee Attorney Ben Crump, second from right, speaks about the death of their son, Victor White III of New Iberia, who allegedly shot himself while handcuffed in a police cruiser in March, in New Orleans.

Lawyers for Mr. and Mrs. White, Attorney Carol Powell-Lexing and Attorney Benjamin Crump (who’s representing the families of Michael Brown, Jr. in Missouri, Trayvon Martin in Florida, and now the family of 2012 ‘suicide while handcuffed’ victim, Chavis Carter) argued evidence will prove Victor White, III was murdered while in police custody.

The family’s fight for justice gained momentum when Stephanie Finley, United States Attorney for the Western District of Louisiana, announced on Sept. 2 that it has launched a federal investigation into his death. The Department of Justice vowed to follow where the evidence leads and take appropriate action based on that evidence, Ms. Finley said in a press release.

“This tragic incident deserves a full review of the evidence; our objective is to discover the truth,” Ms. Finley said.

Police claimed Mr. White shot himself in the back, but on Aug. 14, the local coroner for Iberia Parish contradicted their report, ruling Victor shot himself in the chest. The family is seeking an independent autopsy with forensic pathologist Dr. Michael Baden, former chief medical examiner for New York City. Dr. Baden conducted an independent autopsy for the Brown family on their son 18-year-old Michael Brown, Jr. He was shot by White Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson on Aug. 9.

Atty. Crump and Atty. Daryl Parks are also representing the family of Michael Brown.

Meanwhile, the Louisiana State Police Department has yet to complete its investigation and issue their findings.

“The entire case is absurd,” argued Attorney Powell-Lexing. Particularly disturbing are the initial discrepancies claiming Victor shot himself in the back, she said. “One would think a reasonable person and reasonable police officer would have been able to look at the body and indicate where a bullet wound is …,” she told The Final Call.

“There’s a terrible recent trend that has developed where you have these “Houdini handcuffed” alleged suicide shootings of young men of color in the back of police cars,” said Atty. Crump. “We’ve seen it in 2012 with police in Jonesboro, Arkansas and Chavis Carter. We’ve seen it in 2013 where Jose Jesus Huerta was killed in North Carolina, and then we see it now with Victor White, III.,” he told The Final Call.

Demands for answers
The Sept.1, press conference held by Victor’s parents and their attorneys took place at the Hyatt Regency Hotel New Orleans during the 134th Annual Baptist Convention, USA, Inc. They refuted Carl Ditch, Iberia Parish Coroner’s conclusion that their son defied the laws of physics and shot himself in the chest.

In giving his findings to the White family, Dr. Ditch noted in a press release that he typically doesn’t release information to the public about suicides, but he found it necessary because of events surrounding the case.

Dr. Ditch further stated it’s his duty to rule on cause and manner of death in all cases such as Victor’s to the best of his ability and without bias. However, activists pointed out, his ruling was based on forensics evidence and information gained from an ongoing State Police investigation.

Those are the very people Victor White, III’s family charge killed him with a single gunshot wound to the chest, activists argued. In addition, the coroner considered suicide and a gun accident, but not murder, the family’s attorneys said.

“Although the decedent was handcuffed at the time with his hands to his back, due to his body habitus, the pathologist and investigators agree that he would have been able to manipulate the weapon to the point where the contact entrance wound was found,” Dr. Ditch stated in his press release.

“The family must know the truth. The police report indicates that Victor was pat down twice, prior to him being placed into custody. Police found a small package of contraband, but mysteriously the brother produced a gun and committed suicide in the police vehicle?’” Attorney Crump asked.

Rev. White said there are too many unanswered questions. He received a phone call saying his son had an accident, he recalled. All police told him, Rev. White said, was an investigation was pending and they could not give him any information.

Meanwhile, he said, the coroner only let him see his son’s body from the neck up. He found his son with a swollen face on one side and when asked what happened to his face and who beat him up, he got no answers, he said.

Rev. White searched the State Police’s website and discovered a story claiming his son committed suicide just after police told him there was no information and an investigation was pending.

Open season on Black life?

“When I first heard of the Victor White, III shooting, I said, ‘Wow! Chavis Carter all over again. The New Iberia Parish Sheriff Department must have borrowed the same story from The Jonesboro (Arkansas) Police Department,’” said Kareem Ali, a Muslim activist and member of the Nation of Islam’s South Haven Mississippi Study Group.

He’s been helping Chavis Carter’s mother Teresa to find out just what happened on July 29, 2012. She too has never believed her son committed suicide and is still fighting and praying for justice and the truth to come out.

The characteristics in the White and Carter cases are strikingly identical, Mr. Ali told The Final Call: Both were pat-searched twice and no gun was found on either. A small amount of marijuana was found on both of them. They both where placed in the back of a police cruiser with hands cuffed behind their backs.

Mr. Ali continued, “They both were left handed and somehow, miraculously shot and killed themselves with their right hand while handcuffed behind their back in a police cruiser.”

He recalled the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan’s words in his recent Aug. 17 address titled, ‘The Troubled World: What Should We Be Doing?” in which the Muslim leader spoke on the killing of Michael Brown and the targeting of Black youth by police. Minister Farrakhan pointed out the relationship in law enforcement between police and coroners.

“Black men are being shot down but the courts don’t give us justice. The coroners are the brothers of the killers, so you don’t know what happened to Michael Brown,” said Min. Farrakhan.

Mr. Ali said he was not surprised to learn the coroner’s finding of a gunshot wound to the chest countered Iberia police’s initial account that Victor White, III shot himself in the back.

“These “Houdini handcuffed suicide” shootings are becoming an alarming trend among police departments when young Black and Latino men are left in police custody, and it calls for a thorough investigation from Attorney General Eric Holder and The U.S. Justice Department,” Mr. Ali said.

Dr. Boyce Watkins, author, political analyst and social commentator said while it seems police brutality is on the rise, there really isn’t a spike as of late. “Actually, brutality has probably declined. What we’re seeking is a spike in the visibility of brutality from at least a couple of sources: 1) Democratization of media, so these stories are able to get out to the public, and 2) Increased use of cell phones to capture images on video,” Dr. Watkins told The Final Call via email.

“Truth be told, it’s always been bad,” he added. He likened current realities to someone seeing a doctor for tests then declaring that’s when they got sick. “No, you may have been sick long before you went to the doctor, but the doctor is simply exposing the illness that was always there,” said Dr. Watkins.

"America has always been in denial when it comes to police brutality. Fortunately, these atrocities are now coming to the surface,” said Dr. Watkins.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

When St. Louis Murdered 200 Blacks, & What It Means to Ferguson

By the NOI Research Group

In Ferguson, Missouri, last week, the white producer of Don Lemon’s CNN news show was told by a National Guard soldier, “You want to get out of here because you’re white. Because these niggers, you know, you never know what they’re going to do.”

You may never know what “niggers” will do, but we DO know ABSOLUTELY what whites HAVE DONE, and why we MUST heed the words of the Messenger of Allah, The Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad:

“We need land wherein we can build our own society free from the tension, hatred and violence that have accompanied our race relationship with the white race of America. When you learn that the white man is not your brother, you will readily begin to see and accept the Divine Plan that Almighty Allah (God) has in the working for our people. Who has been our aggressors and murderers ever since we have been in America? Who, by nature, was made quick to shed blood — even his own?”

As the troops descend upon Ferguson, Missouri, in a grotesque display of punitive white supremacy, let us never forget The Messenger’s words in light of what occurred a century ago less than 20 miles to the east of Missouri’s current militarized zone. One of the bloodiest incidents of white savagery ever seen in America has been wiped clean from nearly every American history book. It was uncovered and exposed by the Nation of Islam Research Group and published in The Secret Relationship Between Blacks & Jews, Vol. 2.

In 1917, whites of East St. Louis consumed themselves in an orgy of grisly racial violence that included random lynchings, stonings, shootings, rapes, amputations, human torchings, house burnings, iron-pipe beatings, and axe-murders, culminating in the killing of up to 200 Blacks, though the exact number may never be known. Rampaging whites destroyed $7 million in property ($85 million in today’s value), and 10,000 Blacks were believed to have fled from their homes. One arrested man was heard to say, “I’ve killed my share of niggers today. I have killed so many I am tired and somebody else can finish them.”

Last week, Ferguson, Missouri Blacks were demonstrating against the wanton murder of an unarmed Black youth named Michael Brown. Police were caught on camera screaming, “Bring it! Bring it you f—ing animals!” That is not much different from the Star’s 1917 report that whites “stood around in groups, laughing and jeering while they witnessed the final writhings of the terror and pain-racked wretches who crawled to the streets to die after their flesh had been cooked in their own homes…”

The savage massacre was the result of the economic conflict generated at the end of legalized slavery, when whites set about to systematically remove Blacks from the American workforce in order to replace them with immigrants from Europe. By any standard, this ethnic cleansing would be seen as identical to the Nazi policies of Adolf Hitler. American history books, however, remember this wicked activity as the “Labor Movement”—the mass campaign that gave us the Teamsters, the American Federation of Labor (AFofL), and the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO), and many other unions that secured white working families economically but sentenced Blacks to everlasting poverty and perpetual unemployment.Gompers.Samuel.caption

In East St. Louis in 1917, the trouble started because white business actually preferred Blacks, who were known to be highly skilled and dependable workers. The American Federation of Labor was then led by a conniving racist named Samuel Gompers, a Jew who proved as willing as any hooded Klansman or jack-booted Nazi to employ violence and murder to achieve his Aryan dream. He complained bitterly that the hiring of Blacks “has reached the point where drastic action must be taken…to get rid of [them].” And thus commenced an American massacre of Gaza-like proportions.

As St. Louis cleared the bodies from the roads and ditches, the horrified former President Theodore Roosevelt condemned the horrifying white violence, which he said “was waged with such appalling fatality as to leave an indelible stigma upon the American name.” For his part, Samuel Gompers actually defended the murderers, pinning the blame on the business leaders of St. Louis, who, he said, had been “luring colored men into that city to supplant white labor.” Roosevelt then alluded to Gompers’ own heritage: “In the past I have had to listen too often to the same kind of apologies for the murders committed against the Armenians and the Jews….I say to you, sir, that there can be no justification, no apology for such gross atrocities…”

The great Black scholar W.E.B. Du Bois investigated the East St. Louis massacre for the NAACP and declared that it was “engineered by Gompers and his Trade Unions.” He concluded, in striking harmony with The Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad, that the massacre “brought the most unwilling of us to acknowledge that in the present Union movement, as represented by the AFofL, there is absolutely no hope of justice for an American of Negro descent.” The charge made by America’s leading Black intellectual and activist could not have been clearer: the most prominent and powerful Jew in America, Samuel Gompers, had “engineered” a massacre of scores of innocent Black men, women, and children. Indeed, there is no Ku Klux Klan leader or group of them who have ever been charged with committing that level of mass murder against Black Americans! As the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad would say, “Think about that.”

Let us not miss the relevance of this 1917 incident to the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, in 2014, by policeman Darren Wilson. Even though the ex-president Roosevelt and the preeminent Black intellectual Du Bois agreed on the culpability of America’s most powerful union leader, Samuel Gompers never faced a single day in jail; he did not lose a day of work; he faced no official investigation for his central role in the mass murder of Black American citizens. And neither will Ferguson policeman Wilson be held responsible for his actions that ignited an international firestorm of protest.

And that is no mistake; it is not a failure of leadership. Both Wilson and Gompers are stalwart pillars of American white supremacy, both of whom stepped up to take on the bloody responsibilities of white rulership. Gompers, as a high-level member of the ruling class, had to establish the racial hierarchy in the American labor market, ensuring that Blacks were firmly locked in plantation and maid service at the bottom levels of society. So adept was Gompers in this role that Jewish scholar Paul Berman described him as “The most accomplished and admirable Jew in American history.” An imposing monument dedicated to Gompers in the heart of Washington, DC, secures his official place in the shaping of white America.

HT_darren_wilson_float_jef_140819_16x9_992And Ferguson policeman Wilson performed a vital function as the slave-catching enforcer of a policy that is as traditional and ingrained as the Fourth of July. His street-level role, which he performed with six deadly bullets from his government-issue revolver, was to secure the integrity of the pipeline that channels Black males into the prison labor system, as well as to destroy the troublesome and unruly Black excess—or “niggers” as Don Lemon’s National Guardsman would say. These two “incidents”—a century apart—are not anomalies; nor are they disconnected. They are as old as Herod’s order to kill all the boy babies (Matthew 2:16), and as new as the private prison contracts that require that states supply an annual quota of inmates.

The America of Samuel Gompers is the America of Darren Wilson. Both are patriots of an alien civilization of Caucasians that has run its course and has finally earned the wrath of God Himself. The cheap propaganda of “post-racial advancement” and the false euphoria of Black presidential “progress” have been brutally repudiated by the events of recent days. Blacks are fast coming to understand The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan, as he admonishes us, encourages us, and implores us “to get up from the feet of our 400-year oppressors, unite, pool our resources and do something for self.” That is pure wisdom. All that we see proves such wisdom to be truth!

(Visit the Nation of Islam Research Group online at and join the conversation on and Twitter @ NOIResearch.)

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Unarmed Black youth gunned down again...

Rebellion, confrontations with police as another young Black male is gunned down

By Jihad Hassan Muhammad | Last updated: Aug 12, 2014 - 10:03:56 AM

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(L) Lesley McSpadden, center, and Michael Brown Sr., left, the parents of Michael Brown, listen as attorney Benjamin Crump speaks during a news conference, Aug. 11, in Jennings, Mo. Michael Brown, 18, was shot and killed in a confrontation with police in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson, Mo, on Aug. 9. (R) Protestor Boss Bastain of St. Louis locks arms with others as they confront Missouri State Highway Patrol troopers in front of the Ferguson police station on Aug. 11. Marchers are entering a third day of protests against Sunday's police shooting of Michael Brown. Photos: AP/Wide World photos

FERGUSON, Mo. - Michael Brown, 18, was supposed to be starting college in early August, instead he is listed among Black males shot to death by police, security guards, and self-proclaimed vigilantes. Oscar Grant III, Sean Bell, Trayvon Martin, Jordan Davis, and Jonathan Ferrell are among familiar names of those whose lives were taken.

United States Attorney General Eric Holder released a statement Aug. 11 saying a “fulsome review” of the police shooting of the child whose mother wept bitterly before TV cameras was needed. The attorney general’s words came two days after the young man’s death.
Protester holds a picture of Michael Brown at a rally and vigil August 10. Photos: Cartan X. Mosley
“The shooting incident in Ferguson, Missouri this weekend deserves a fulsome review. In addition to the local investigation already underway, FBI agents from the St. Louis field office, working together with attorneys from the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division and U.S. Attorney’s Office, have opened a concurrent, federal inquiry,” Atty. Holder said. “Aggressively pursuing investigations such as this is critical for preserving trust between law enforcement and the communities they serve.”

Those promises followed confrontations between Blacks and police, smashed windows and some looting as angry residents vented their frustration and pain. Police officers, they said, harassed participants in what was a peaceful demonstration. Officers laughed, mocked, pointed, threatened and showed no respect for Michael and no remorse for his death, they said.

One young man complained on social media that the mourners were called “porch monkeys” and that police wanted a war. There are only three Black officers in the Ferguson Police Dept., which is 98 percent White, said Anthony Shahid, an advisor to the Brown family. According to the family, the young man’s body lay in the street for four-and-a-half-hours after the fatal encounter. That helped stoke anger and fuel outrage as police would allow no one near Michael’s corpse in the suburb outside St. Louis.

According to eyewitness accounts, Michael and a friend were walking near Canfield Drive in Ferguson when there was an encounter with police. What happened next remains somewhat unclear. The officer reportedly ordered the two to get out of the street. One account says the youth were told, “Get the f---k out the street!” There may have been a verbal exchange and the officer allegedly attempted to pull Michael into the police car. The encounter ended with Michael being shot numerous times.

Witnesses said Michael had his hands up and was unarmed. Various witnesses insist the officer continued to shoot Michael as the teen lay on the ground.

“I saw him turn around with his arms up in the air and they shot him in his face and chest and he went down unarmed,” said Piaget Crenshaw who saw the shooting.

“The officer started choking him and tried pulling him into the police vehicle, his weapon was drawn and he said, ‘I will shoot you, I’m going to shoot,’ when the first shot went off,” said Dorian Johnson, a friend of Michael’s.

“He shot again, and once my friend felt that shot, he turned around and put his hands in the air, and he started to get down,” Mr. Johnson said. “But the officer still approached with his weapon drawn and fired several more shots.”

“We wasn’t causing harm to nobody,” Mr. Johnson told a television station. “We had no weapons on us at all.”  The two were walking together who confronted by police.

Unrest spread among residents in the apartment complex as a result of the shooting and as Michael’s lifeless body lay in a puddle of blood.

St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar flanked by Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson, told reporters Aug. 10, “One of those individuals at the time came in as the officer was exiting his police car. Allegedly pushed the police officer back into the car where he physically assaulted the police officer. It is our understanding at this point in the investigation that within the police car there was a struggle over the officer’s weapon. There was at least one shot fired within the car after that. The officer came back out of the car, he exited his vehicle, and there was a shooting that occurred where the officer in fact shot the subject … they were fatal injuries.” The officer, said to be a White six-year veteran, has been placed on paid administrative leave.

“All my hard work and everything I put into to him they just took that, with no compassion,” said Michael’s mother Lesley McSpadden.

Assisting the Brown family are community activist Anthony Shahid, members of the Fruit of Islam from Muhammad Mosque Number 24 in St. Louis and attorney Benjamin Crump, who is now assisting the Brown family.

Emotions boil over
Community anger reached a boiling point after the shooting and with subsequent events. Some 600 people gathered near where Michael’s body lay and there were stand-offs with police, who reported that shots were fired in the area. Police would not allow anyone near Michael’s remains. Later many marched and held vigils to call for justice, seek answers and to comfort one another. Demonstrations were held and memorials erected near the spot where Michael was killed, and rallies were held outside the Ferguson Police station. Officers in riot gear and with dogs were on duty at the gatherings.

“We are developing a list of demands that we want put forward, which will include publicly disclosing the name of the White officer involved in the shooting, secondly for him to be immediately fired and charged with murder, third is for the Ferguson Police Department to issue their protocol manual on how they are to respond in a situation like the one Saturday, and the fourth one was to reflect the racial population of the officers responding to the community,” declared longtime activist Zaki Baruti of the Universal African Peoples Organization.

Local and national media outlets quickly showed scenes of looting, but according to social media and others on the ground, the media did not show police officers firing at peaceful protesters and provoking demonstrators.

Chawn Kweli, national chief of staff for the New Black Panther Party, said SWAT team members confiscated cell phones of protesters exercising their rights to video record law enforcement officers. There have been some arrests and reports that cellular telephone capabilities are limited in the area.
“Tensions are very high and at this point the apartment complex is still surrounded by SWAT,” Mr. Kweli told The Final Call a day after fatal shooting.  

Mr. Kweli described a chaotic scene Aug. 10 when protests formed at the apartment complex where Michael was killed. Mr. Kweli knows the difference between sounds made by rubber bullets and live ammunition. SWAT team members teargased and repeatedly fired live ammunition with the intent to kill or maim into a crowd of over 2,000, which included many women and children, he charged.

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“It was beyond the shadow of a doubt live ammunition,” Mr. Kweili said.

“There has not been a riot in St. Louis, or anything like this in over 60 years,” said Nation of Islam Student Minister Donald Muhammad of Muhammad Mosque No. 28.
Organizations such as the New Black Panther Party, the Tauheed Youth Group, the Organization for Black Struggle, and the UAPO have been very active in the protests. Many say were it not for police agitation, protests may have remained peaceful.

“These young people did not get up yesterday and say we are going to riot today, I was with a lot of them throughout this situation, and they were agitated. We arrived for a peaceful vigil, calling for justice and the St. Louis County Police arrived with riot gear on storming through the crowds, with little regard for respect,” said Bgyrl, a longtime St. Louis hip-hop pioneer and activist.

Some young people who wished to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation said Ferguson Police officers behaved aggressively with dogs barking and brandishing M16’s while “laughing and threatening us.”

This same sentiment was shared by over a dozen youth who wanted to be part of a campaign to mobilize for justice. Others say the rebellion is the result of decades of neglect, racism, and police brutality in the area. It has gotten to the point where the people feel like they have to stand up and declare they are not going to take it anymore, they said.

James W. Muhammad, who ran Dynasty Hip-Hop Mentoring Program in St. Louis before moving to Dallas, says the youth can’t be blamed. “There are a lot of people upset with the youth because they say they have misdirected anger, well, the only way misdirected anger and unorganized activity can exist is when we don’t give direction to our youth,” said Mr. Muhammad. “The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan talked about justifiable homicide of Black youth. Our youth are now in the position where helicopter gunships can come murder them because they are looting.”

Rev. Al Sharpton of the National Action Network, in an Aug. 10 statement, said he spoke with Brown family members who asked him to come to St. Louis. National Action Network field staff have been dispatched to the area to work with others, he said.

The FBI is looking into possible civil rights violations arising from the shooting, said Cheryl Mimura, a spokeswoman for the FBI’s St. Louis field office. She said the FBI would be investigating regardless of the public attention surrounding the matter.
Nearly three dozen people were arrested following a Sunday night candlelight vigil Aug. 10 after crowds looted and burned stores, vandalized vehicles and confronted officers who tried to block access to parts of the city, the Associated Press reported.

St. Louis County police spokesman Brian Schellman said 32 people were arrested for various offenses, including assault, burglary and theft. Two officers suffered minor injuries, and there were no reports of civilians hurt.

Several businesses were looted, including a check-cashing store, a boutique and a small grocery store. People also took items from a sporting goods store and a cellphone retailer and carted rims away from a tire store.

A spokeswoman for St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley said tear gas had been used.
Ferguson Police Chief Tom Jackson said that there’s no video footage of the shooting from the apartment complex or from any police cruiser dashboard cameras or body-worn cameras that the department recently bought but has not yet put to use.

Lesley McSpadden said she did not understand why police did not subdue her son with a club or stun gun. She said the officer involved should be fired and prosecuted.

“I would like to see him go to jail with the death penalty,” she said, fighting back tears.
The killing drew criticism from some civil rights leaders, who referred to the 2012 racially charged shooting of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin by a Florida neighborhood watch organizer who was acquitted of murder charges. Atty. Crump also represented Trayvon’s family.

John Gaskin, who serves on both the St. Louis County and national boards of directors for the NAACP, said the group was “outraged because yet again a young African-American man has been killed by law enforcement.”

Ferguson’s population of about 21,000 people is almost 70 percent black.
(Photographer Cartan X Mosley, Final Call staff and the Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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