FERGUSON, Mo. — NAACP advocates are urging calm Monday after a rally for an 18-year-old shot by police became a scene of anger and looting.
St. Louis County NAACP will have a meeting at 6 p.m. Monday in response to the killing of Mike Brown, 18, of Ferguson, Mo. Ferguson police shot the unarmed teen shot multiple times Saturday after they say he was involved in a scuffle with an officer, Brown and another person in Ferguson, a predominantly black St. Louis suburb.
"It is our hope that this discussion will provide accurate and reliable information to be shared with the community," Esther Haywood, president of the county's NAACP, said in a statement. "Our expectation is to educate the public on the NAACP's strategy toward justice for the Brown family and the community."
Police early Monday used tear gas to disperse crowd that had gathered a few hours earlier for a candlelight vigil for Brown; more than 300 officers from 19 St. Louis-area departments were called in.
At least one convenieere broken into, including a check-cashing store, a boutique, a small grocery store, a sporting goods store, a cellphone retailer, a tire store and a Wal-Mart. As people carted away goods from several of the stores, police moved in.
"Right now, the small group of people are creating a huge mess," Ferguson Mayor James Knowles told KTVI-TV in St. Louis early Monday. Police were having a difficult time catching the looters because crimes were happening at several locations.
Thirty-two people were arrested, two officers had minor injuries — one injured a knee another was struck with a brick — one officer was shot at but not injured, nearly a dozen patrol cars were damaged, and someone in the crowd fired shots at a police helicopter but did not hit it, according to St. Louis County Police.
Earlier Sunday, Chief Jon Belmar of the St. Louis County Police Department said the incident started when a Ferguson officer encountered two men, one who was Brown, on the street near an apartment complex here. One pushed the officer him into his police vehicle.
The men had a struggle inside the car, Belmar said, and at some point the man — it was unclear whether it was Brown — reached for the officer's weapon. One shot was fired inside the vehicle.
The fight moved outside the squad car and Brown suffered fatal gunshot wounds about 35 feet from the vehicle, Belmar said. The second person has not been arrested, and police are not sure whether he was armed.
The NAACP has called for the FBI to investigate the shooting, and the St. Louis County executive also said he would request FBI involvement. The U.S. Department of Justice said Attorney General Eric Holder had instructed staff to monitor developments.
Investigators found multiple shell casings at the scene, and that Brown was shot more than once, but an exact number of shots fired has not yet been determined, Belmar said. All the shell casings came from the officer's weapon.
Chief Tom Jackson of Ferguson City Police, a city of about 21,000 residents 10 miles northwest of St. Louis, asked county police to take over the investigation, Belmar said. Results of the investigation will be turned over to the St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney's Office, which will determine if charges should be filed.
"My son just turned 18 and graduated from high school, and he don't bother nobody," Brown's mother, Lesley McSpadden, said Saturday night. Brown was to start at Vatterott College, a trade school with 25 campuses in 10 states, next week.
She doesn't understand why police didn't use a club or Taser if he presented a problem. She said the officer involved should be fired and prosecuted.
"They told me how many times my son was shot — eight," McSpadden said. He was visiting his grandmother and was returning from the store.
The race of the officer involved in the shooting has not been disclosed. He has been placed on paid administrative leave.
CONTINUING COVERAGE FROM GANNETT STATION IN STL.: 2 officers injured, 32 arrested during riots