Violence Strikes Ferguson for Second Night (+Photos, Videos)
Violence Strikes Ferguson for Second Night (+Photos, Videos)
A protester covers himself with a US flag during a demonstration outside the police station in Ferguson, Mo., on Nov. 26, 2014. (Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images)

A protester covers himself with a US flag during a demonstration outside the police station in Ferguson, Mo., on Nov. 26, 2014. (Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images)

More than a hundred protesters are arrested at one intersection following the grand jury decision not to indict a white police officer who had shot dead an unarmed black teenager in Ferguson, Mo., in the early morning hours of Nov. 26, 2014, in Los Angeles, California. Police officer Darren Wilson shot 18-year-old Michael Brown on Aug. 9, sparking large ongoing protests. (David McNew/Getty Images)

More than a hundred protesters are arrested at one intersection following the grand jury decision not to indict a white police officer who had shot dead an unarmed black teenager in Ferguson, Mo., in the early morning hours of Nov. 26, 2014, in Los Angeles, California. Police officer Darren Wilson shot 18-year-old Michael Brown on Aug. 9, sparking large ongoing protests. (David McNew/Getty Images)

A protester holds her hands up in front of a police car in Ferguson, Mo., on Nov. 25, 2014, during demonstrations a day after violent protests and looting following the grand jury decision in the fatal shooting of a 18-year-old black teenager Michael Brown. (Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images)

A protester holds her hands up in front of a police car in Ferguson, Mo., on Nov. 25, 2014, during demonstrations a day after violent protests and looting following the grand jury decision in the fatal shooting of a 18-year-old black teenager Michael Brown. (Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images)

Police stand guard in front of a smoldering squad car after it was set on fire by demonstrators during a protest on Nov. 25, 2014, in Ferguson, Mo. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Police stand guard in front of a smoldering squad car after it was set on fire by demonstrators during a protest on Nov. 25, 2014, in Ferguson, Mo. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

People are surrounded by policeas they wait to be taken into custody during a demonstration following the grand jury decision not to indict a white police officer who had shot dead an unarmed black teenager in Ferguson, Mo., in the early morning hours of Nov. 26, 2014, in Los Angeles, California. Police officer Darren Wilson shot 18-year-old Michael Brown on August 9, sparking large ongoing protests. (David McNew/Getty Images)

People are surrounded by policeas they wait to be taken into custody during a demonstration following the grand jury decision not to indict a white police officer who had shot dead an unarmed black teenager in Ferguson, Mo., in the early morning hours of Nov. 26, 2014, in Los Angeles, California. Police officer Darren Wilson shot 18-year-old Michael Brown on August 9, sparking large ongoing protests. (David McNew/Getty Images)

Karen Gold paints on a boarded window of her store in Ferguson, Mo., on Nov. 26, 2014. Protest marches sprang up in cities across the US amid a tense security operation in Ferguson, the town at the center of the country's latest racially-charged stand-off following the grand jury decision in the fatal shooting of a 18-year-old black teenager Michael Brown. (Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images)

Karen Gold paints on a boarded window of her store in Ferguson, Mo., on Nov. 26, 2014. Protest marches sprang up in cities across the US amid a tense security operation in Ferguson, the town at the center of the country's latest racially-charged stand-off following the grand jury decision in the fatal shooting of a 18-year-old black teenager Michael Brown. (Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images)

An armored military Humvee of the Missouri National Guard sits at a perimeter post outside a Target department store, offering support to the Missouri Highway Patrol Command Center in Jennings, Mo., on Nov. 26, 2104. Protesters set buildings ablaze and looted stores in the nearby US town of Ferguson on Nov. 24 after a grand jury chose not to press charges against a white officer who shot dead a black teen. US President Barack Obama and the family of late 18-year-old Michael Brown appealed in vain for calm after a prosecutor said a grand jury had found the policeman acted in self-defense. (Michael B. Thomas/AFP/Getty Images)

An armored military Humvee of the Missouri National Guard sits at a perimeter post outside a Target department store, offering support to the Missouri Highway Patrol Command Center in Jennings, Mo., on Nov. 26, 2104. Protesters set buildings ablaze and looted stores in the nearby US town of Ferguson on Nov. 24 after a grand jury chose not to press charges against a white officer who shot dead a black teen. US President Barack Obama and the family of late 18-year-old Michael Brown appealed in vain for calm after a prosecutor said a grand jury had found the policeman acted in self-defense. (Michael B. Thomas/AFP/Getty Images)

Demonstrators protest the shooting death of Michael Brown hold hands Nov. 26, 2014, in St. Louis, Mo. (Joshua Lott/Getty Images)

Demonstrators protest the shooting death of Michael Brown hold hands Nov. 26, 2014, in St. Louis, Mo. (Joshua Lott/Getty Images)


Ferguson Protester: This Is Not Afghanistan – 2,220 National Guards Deployed to Ferguson (Epoch Times Video)

FERGUSON, Mo.—The night after the grand jury decision in the Michael Brown shooting case was announced, protesters were out again in force at different locations around St. Louis.

Nowhere did the situation become as volatile and dangerous as it did in Ferguson.

In front of the Ferguson police station, protesters gathered in a crowd for a ritual that some locals have come to call “just another night in Ferguson.” Even before the grand jury decision was announced, this spot had become the de facto location to face off with law enforcement.

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On this night—just 24 hours after Ferguson became a lawless canvas of marauding bandits who fired weapons, set buildings and police cars on fire, and shattered windows—more than ever, there seemed to be less certainty about what would happen.

That sentiment was only deepened by Gov. Jay Nixon’s announcement earlier in the day that 2,200 more National Guardsmen would be deployed to Ferguson. That number is equivalent to about 10 percent of the town’s population.

Article Quote: Violent Mobs Strike Ferguson for Second Night

At the police station on Ferguson’s version of Main Street, South Florissant, dozens of police were joined by some of those troops. The mood of the crowd swung between jovial at times to angry and frustrated.

“We just want justice!” one woman yelled. “Why don’t you just talk to us? We out here, why don’t you talk to us?!”

As usual, the police had little response. When they did speak, they were unusually polite.

“Get off the sidewalk and on the street, please,” said one officer gently, almost unsettlingly. “Get back, please.”


Tear Gas Used as Police and Protesters Clash After Second Night of Protests (Epoch Times Video)

At times, traffic was blocked but protesters remained largely on one side of the street. A neighborhood resident, a man whom everyone seemed to know and respect, helped direct traffic and kept the crowd from advancing too far toward the police. It was the Ferguson version of law and order. Aside from a few sporadic arrests, the night proceeded with little incident.

Then someone from the back of the crowd threw a smoldering smoke bomb. Then there was another. It was just enough to ratchet up the anxiety level of everyone there—the protesters, the police, the onlookers, the media, and the clergy.

One woman tried to call for four and a half minutes of silence “out of respect for the dead,” but to no avail. Another woman tried to steer the crowd toward activism, but her efforts were futile.

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Slowly but surely, small bands of men with bandanas over their faces began to appear out of the night to join the crowd in groups of four or five. On the other side of town along Ferguson’s other Main Street, West Florissant, where so much damage had been done the night before, rumors of more fires and gunfire began to circulate.

But by all accounts, it was a peaceful night, if sometimes a bit rowdy. Then from the sky came what seemed to be the turning point. A police helicopter hovered above, shining its spotlight on people, which seemed to anger the crowd.

“Come on, let’s go!” yelled a man, gesturing as he and several others started out purposefully in the direction of City Hall.

The crowd followed in what looked like an impromptu protest march. Along the way, men in uniforms peeked down at the crowd from the roofs of buildings, shying away at the sight of cameras.

At the corner of Church Street, everyone turned and converged on a parked police car. They stood on top of it like a hunter who had just shot big game, posing for a photo. The car windows were smashed with bricks and someone tried to set it on fire and failed.

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Several people managed to tip it onto its side and it rocked back to the ground. Others converged on the glass facade of City Hall nearby and smashed every window they could with reckless abandon.

The sickening sound of crushing and breaking glass seemed to be everywhere.

When the police finally arrived, they were slow to make a move. It was not until the rear window of a police SUV was smashed with a brick that they sprang into action. Almost immediately tear gas canisters were everywhere on the street, scattering journalists, videographers, protesters, and lawbreakers. Those who remained were corralled onto two ends of the street.

Most were pushed back to the main road and converged in an angry, screaming crowd.

“Citizens of Ferguson, get out of the street,” said an officer over a loudspeaker. Nobody complied, so the orders changed. “Citizens of Ferguson, this is an unlawful assembly. Leave this area immediately or be subject to arrest. This includes media personnel.”

In the end, the actions of a few in a crowd of many caused the loss of rights to the entire crowd.

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