Riot Rumors: Los Angeles, Oakland (Fires), Chicago, New York City (Bridges), Seattle, Washington DC, Boston Get Ferguson Protests, More (Photos)
UPDATE on Tuesday: There were more protests in New York City, Los Angeles, Washington DC, and other major cities across the US.
Following the grand jury’s decision not to indict Ferguson, Missouri, police officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of Michael Brown on Monday, there were protests across the US. On Twitter, some people were seemingly spreading rumors about “riots” going on in other cities.
UPDATE: As of early Tuesday morning EST, some protesters in Oakland threw bottles and other objects at police after they declared it an unlawful assembly; some fires were also started. I-580 was also blocked by protesters in the Bay Area. Another report said that protesters were attempting to take over the Manhattan Bridge and shut down the Triboro Bridge in New York City. In Seattle, there were reports of protesters throwing fireworks at police and in Los Angeles, some reported that rocks were thrown at CHP officers.
— David (@TheZOMB) November 25, 2014
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The were rumors on social media sites including Twitter that some of the protests would devolve into rioting.
One person wrote: “My mom just texted me saying that there’s a riot next to her job over ferguson in Oakland.”
Added another: “Crenshaw and La Brea exits closed. Cops in #riot gear. And cop cars lining under pass. “Preventative” or “Inciting”??? #LosAngeles #Fergsuon.”
Said another, “Wow. Seeing some of the pictures from Oakland is crazy. This is not a “riot”. This is a movement.”
“I am finding a riot in Los Angeles right now and JOINING IT. #Ferguson #JusticeForMikeBrown,” one person wrote on Twitter.
— Willie (@ChampagneKony) November 25, 2014
Said another, “I understand that the Ferguson community is upset, but it’s stupid that a few residents of Los Angeles are willing to participate in a riot.”
One added: “Sooo there’s a riot in NewYork… And I witnessed it.”
“Now a riot in New York. Smh yea things bout to get real . #America,” another person said.
A Walgreens in Ferguson reportedly was set on fire, and looters were attempting to grab whatever items they could. A Dollar Tree was also looted, a Little Ceasar’s restaurant was set on fire, police cars were set on fire, and Interstate 44 near St. Louis was also shut down by protesters on Monday evening.
There were protests in Los Angeles, Oakland, Chicago, Sacramento, New York, Washington DC, and Seattle over the grand jury’s decision. At least several people were arrested in Times Square in Manhattan.
I repeat: This is not a riot. It’s a protest in the nation’s capital: pic.twitter.com/UaF0buV1eR
— Kevin Rector (@RectorSun) November 25, 2014
According to report from The Associated Press, the protests in New York and Los Angeles were done “intially peacefully.”
The protesters were marching, waving signs and shouted “Hands Up! Don’t Shoot,” referring to a slogan that has become a rallying cry against police killings. The protests were planned before the announcement not to charge Wilson, AP reported.
In several large cities like Los Angeles, New York, and Chicago, police departments said they would be prepared for large demonstrations with the chance of some violence.
Protests continue to grow in NYC, Ferguson, Oakland and Los Angeles. pic.twitter.com/IWna6wLVoh
— Nick Bilton (@nickbilton) November 25, 2014
During the initial protests in Ferguson, there was reports of rioting, looting, vandalism, and assaults.
Police in other cities said the gatherings were mainly peaceful immediately following the announcement on Monday.
President Barack Obama called for peace and calm following the grand jury indictment–a statement that was in stark contrast to the scenes unfolding in Ferguson.
“We are a nation built on the rule of law, so we need to accept that this decision was the grand jury’s to make,” Obama said in a White House statement on Monday.
“That won’t be done by throwing bottles. That won’t be done by smashing car windows. That won’t be done by using this as an excuse to vandalize property,” Obama added. “It certainly won’t be done by hurting anybody.”
The family of Michael Brown also issued a statement about the indictment.
“We are profoundly disappointed that the killer of our child will not face the consequence of his actions. While we understand that many others share our pain, we ask that you channel your frustration in ways that will make a positive change. We need to work together to fix the system that allowed this to happen,” reads the statement
Story is developing…
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AP updates on the protests:
Dozens block Oakland streets over Missouri slaying
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — About 100 people holding signs that read “The People Say Guilty!” and “Missouri, Palestine, Justice Now!” are blocking an intersection in downtown Oakland to protest a grand jury decision not to indict a white police officer in the fatal shooting of an unarmed black teenager.
The crowd gathered Monday night at the intersection of 14th and Broadway after a line of police blocked them from getting on the on-ramp of a highway.
Minutes earlier some of the protesters lay down on the ground while others outlined their bodies in chalk.
In San Francisco, a few dozen people gathered in the Mission District chanting “No justice, no peace!”
Seattle: protesters march after Ferguson decision
SEATTLE (AP) — More than 100 demonstrators marched through Seattle on Monday night, joining thousands across the country in a protest of a grand jury decision not to indict a white police officer who killed an 18-year-old black man in Ferguson, Missouri.
Chanting “Black Lives Matter and “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot,” Seattle marchers stopped periodically to sit or lie down in city intersections, blocking traffic before moving on. Dozens of police officers watched the crowd.
Seattle Mayor Ed Murray declared that his city “is committed to the goals of racial and social justice” but also acknowledged that Seattle is “far from perfect.”
St. Louis County, Missouri, authorities earlier announced that Officer Darren Wilson will not be charged in the Aug. 9 shooting death of Michael Brown.