Tags: Ferguson in Crisis | ferguson | riots | st. louis | community activist | police | shooting

Community Activist: St. Louis Can Still Erupt Over Ferguson

By    |   Tuesday, 24 Feb 2015 10:03 PM

A St. Louis community activist is warning street violence could still erupt because of simmering violence in the wake of the Michael Brown shooting death last August.

"As St. Louis walks into this next warm season, and it’s right around the corner, we’re not ready for what’s going to come out of our neighborhoods," James Clark, of the nonprofit Better Family Life, told the Missouri Advisory Committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports.

The panel is examining racial implications in the police use of force.

"This is going to be a very, very challenging time in our community as it relates to crime and violence. Once this weather breaks, there are going to be challenges for the police officers. How the police are going to manage it — my prayers are with them."

St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar said told the panel "I’ve had a front row seat to all of this for 29 years, and the political will to discuss these issues wasn’t there until Michael Brown’s death."

The unarmed black teen was fatally shot last Aug. 9 by a white Ferguson, Mo., police officer; a St. Louis County grand jury decided not to indict the officer, Darren Wilson, triggering two nights of rioting in Ferguson, and protests around the country.

Brown’s death "emboldened the black population," Clark said, the Post-Dispatch reports.

"I have been telling St. Louis officials as early as 2011 that we’re not ready for what is to come,” Clark said, the Post-Dispatch reports. "Things are getting more volatile in the community."

Clark, who works with young people in poor neighborhoods, told the panel these youth "feel they can openly confront police officers; it’s a growing trend."

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A St. Louis community activist is warning street violence could still erupt because of simmering violence in the wake of the Michael Brown shooting death last August.
ferguson, riots, st. louis, community activist, police, shooting
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2015-03-24
Tuesday, 24 Feb 2015 10:03 PM
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