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Feature: Riot-hit U.S. city enters second night of curfew

English.news.cn   2014-08-18 17:14:06

FERGUSON, United States, Aug. 17 (Xinhua) -- The streets were calm in this U.S. town during the day. But as night fell, police officers in regular uniforms were replaced by ones with riot gear and weapons.

It was the second night of curfew in this St. Louis suburb after a week of demonstrations in the wake of the shooting death of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown by white police officer Darren Wilson.

Both riot police and protesters were out on the streets. The atmosphere was festive, but highly charged. Some people were sitting in cars and blasting a popular song named "I Am Mike Brown," while some others were dancing on the streets as traffic ground to a halt.

The night began in a similar fashion with the previous one, with protestors holding signs and chanting "Hands up, don't shoot."

"You really just want justice; you really want it peacefully; you just want all the violence to stop ... I didn't like that when [the County Police] were locking everyone up," said Ricky Lane Sr., a concrete finisher, who had been protesting for two days.

He acknowledged that the police's response to the protests had been pretty good since state troopers took over security of the town a few days ago.

For Donna Thomas, a systems accountant, the shooting reminded her of something that was supposed to disappear long ago. "It makes you feel like since slavery there're some things in St. Louis that just haven't changed," she said.

"If you shoot someone one time, and that was it, okay. But he shot him for 10. That was an execution. That was horrible," she said to Xinhua.

According to an autopsy report cited by the New York Times, 18-year-old Brown was shot at least six times, including twice in the head.

Zakiyyah S. Muhammad traveled to Ferguson from her Chicago home after watching the news of the shooting.

"What's taking so long to charge him (the police officer)?" she asked. "Racism and white supremacy is behind every oppression that black people face. It's in education, in movies, in everything."

Corey Brooks and his sister Carla Brooks-Ducksworth were participating in the protest for the first time. He stressed that the shooting is "the result of things that have been going on for the past four or five years."

"Many of us have become victims of a system. It's a powder keg just waiting for something to ignite it," he added.

On Sunday, a unity rally was held in Ferguson in memory of the teenager. Missouri State Highway Patrol Captain Ron Johnson, the new leader of the policing effort in Ferguson, opened the rally emotionally.

"We need to thank Mike for his life. We need to thank him for the change that he is going to make in America," he said.

Martin Luther King III, the eldest son of civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and also an American human rights advocate and community activist, also addressed the rally.

Editor: Yang Yi
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