Earlier on Monday activists released a pair of balloons attached to a sign saying “Racism lives here,” floating it near the city’s iconic arch. Some protesters reportedly jumped barricades in front of a federal courthouse during a demonstration demanding the disbanding of the Ferguson police department.
Protesters chanted, “Do your job, DOJ!”
Police arrested 57 protesters after they blocked the federal courthouse in St. Louis, Reuters reported. Prominent activists in the Black Lives Matter movement were detained, including DeRay McKesson and Johnetta Elzie, according to Mother Jones. Union Theological Seminary professor Cornel West was also arrested, The Associated Press reported.
Videos posted to Twitter by McKesson show St. Louis police and Federal Protective Service officers arresting people who sat down outside the courthouse.
Violence between police and protesters took place during demonstrations Sunday night, police said. Two unmarked police cars were hit by gunfire. Three St. Louis County police officers suffered injuries, with two allegedly pepper sprayed by protesters. A thrown rock cut the face of one officer, who was treated at a local hospital. Five people were arrested.
The most serious injury occurred when St. Louis County plainclothes detective shot an 18-year-old in Ferguson over shots he allegedly fired in the direction of officers. The suspect, Tyrone Harris Jr., was critically wounded, and he was charged with 10 felony counts Monday.
Harris’ father called the police version of events “a bunch of lies.” He said two girls who were with his son told him he was unarmed and was drawn into a dispute involving two groups of young people.
St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar said he believes the shots came from about six shooters. It was not clear what prompted the exchange, he said, but two groups of young people had been feuding.
Tyrone Harris Sr. said his son was “running for his life” after gunfire broke out. He told the AP his son was a close friend of Michael Brown and was in Ferguson on Sunday night to pay respects.
“My son was running to the police to ask for help, and he was shot,” he said. “It’s all a bunch of lies ... They’re making my son look like a criminal.”
Al Jazeera and wire services