Michael Brown Shooting

Riot Police Enforcing State-Mandated Curfew in Ferguson, Tear Gas Fired at Protesters, Reports of Shot Fired

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Ferguson, Saturday night, riot police and tear gas
Livestream

Jay Nixon declared a "state of emergency" in Ferguson, ordering a curfew between midnight and 5:00 a.m. CDT. At about 12:45 a.m. police fired tear gas at protesters. According to accounts on Twitter, police announced that they would be arresting everyone. Cops created a "zone" for journalists to remain in. Huffington Post journalist Ryan Reilly said on Twitter that he and other reporters asked cops to allow a small group of reporters to get closer to the police action—they were, predictably, denied. The adage that "it's better to ask forgiveness than seek permission" probably applies here.

Meanwhile in a pretty depressing journalism fail, Politico's Byron Tau, also in Ferguson, explained on Twitter that the First Amendment's "subject to reasonable time and place restrictions." He can't witness police enforcing those restrictions because he's in the "first amendment zone" behind riot police, where the view is obscured.

There are also reports of shots fired from multiple observers on the ground. Reilly tweeted that police radio also mentioned a person shot, though it was unclear if it was by a rubber bullet or the traditional kind. CNN commentator Marc Lamont Hill, on the ground in Ferguson, tweeted that a "kid" was shot but not by police.

You can watch what's happening on a stationary livestream from Argus Radio here and a roving one from Vice News here. You can follow a bunch of people on Twitter, including the ones linked to above. I'll keep retweeting for a while longer so you can check my feed to find other observers to follow.

Via News2Share, here's video of some of the tear gassing:

NEXT: Midnight Curfew Approaching in Ferguson, Missouri

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  1. Meanwhile in a pretty depressing journalism fail, Politico’s Byron Tau, also in Ferguson, explained on Twitter that the First Amendment’s “subject to reasonable time and place restrictions.” He can’t witness police enforcing those restrictions because he’s in the “first amendment zone” behind riot police, where the view is obscured.

    I’m sure the Staties appreciate Tau’s cowardice compliance. Any reasonable person will agree that the First Amendment can be suspended indefinitely during a state of emergency so that the stormtroopers can resolve the situation in a swift and brutal fashion without all of those cameras and twitters getting in the way.

    1. I mean that was just cringeworthy. And no one reacted. What with all these other journalists now paying attention to police brutality (however briefly) I feel like the girl from that Twilight Zone episode where the rest of the world is full of hideous people. Am I the ugly one without knowing it? It seems his statement should make him a laughingstock among journalists. But I’m just a nutty libertarian who doesn’t care about black people and has been ignoring Ferguson

      1. Let the anger flow through you, Ed. There’s nothing wrong with you, the U.S. has simply been taken over by totalitarian, narcissistic morons who are incapable of understanding the consequences of their own actions or beliefs.

        So buck up! There’s nothing wrong with you, we’re just all doomed.

      2. Did you walk over and punch him? Seems like a perfectly readonable thing to do.

  2. This whole situation is going to begin and end with ‘Well (sigh), you know…’ from Progs and SoCons alike.

    1. Let’s just blame things that don’t require any actual reforms but legitimize our claims to authority, like racism and poverty and the breakdown of family

      1. You are doing the same thing with “reforms”.

        Everyone has an idea what they think the problem is and how to solve it.

        The fact is, a huge guy (6’4″) attacked a cop right after robbing a liquor store (and yes, the cop knew about the robbery) and got shot.

        Rather than “police militarization” (which did a great job of stopping looting from happening tonight, BTW), the problem was the guy was a thug, throwing his weight and size around.

        It caught up to him, just like it did with Trayvon Martin.

        Live like a thug, die like a thug. Physical prowess doesn’t get anywhere when you run into a guy with a gun, be it a private citizen or a cop.

        1. No, you’re wrong. Even assuming Brown’s guilt, and that he fought with the cop for a gun, if he was shot from 30 feet away, hands up or not, that’s a bad shot. And the reason there’s so little trust in police on this and other cases is because there are so many bad actors. They’re protected by union contracts. If people saw that bad behavior by cops has consequences, they would trust cops more and things like this would happen less.

          Even criminals have rights. If you don’t agree with that you can keep reading Reason but you’re not really a libertarian and I’m not really interested in explaining why criminals have rights. I expect the people interested in what I right to already know that. And all Americans should know that if they got a good civics education.

          1. if he was shot from 30 feet away, hands up or not, that’s a bad shot

            Why are you assuming this to be true?

            Both the distance and that it is necessarily a “bad shoot”?

            1. “IF” usually signals you’re not assuming something to be true but considering the possibility. I consider the 30 feet distance to be the the most likely figure because if it were a much shorter distance I think cops would have made sure it was leaked.

          2. Thanks, Ed. It’s nice to have somebody on our side.

          3. “No, you’re wrong. Even assuming Brown’s guilt, and that he fought with the cop for a gun, if he was shot from 30 feet away, hands up or not, that’s a bad shot.”

            Fighting with the cop for his gun by itself constituted a violent felony. Legally, that justifies the use of deadly force to stop Brown from escaping, according to SCOTUS and according to most other legal systems. The reasoning is that it is important to stop potentially violent individuals from going on and hurting people, even if they simply are trying to escape and there is no self defense involved. I don’t know whether that is a good principle or not, but that’s a separate issue from police brutality or militarization.

            In a more libertarian world, perhaps police wouldn’t try to stop this guy and he’d get shot by the next private citizen who he threatened. But most people don’t want to shoot a human being, even a thug. So they prefer outsourcing the roughing up and killing of thugs to other thugs.

            That’s the real reason for the militarization of police and gun control. And despite all the headlines, for most people, it’s working pretty well, if you look at the statistics.

            If you want changes, you need something more specific and concrete than “we need reforms” or “the police is too militarized”. Personally, I think the best reform we could make is to mandate the use of body cameras by police.

            1. Fighting with the cop for his gun by itself constituted a violent felony. Legally, that justifies the use of deadly force to stop Brown from escaping, according to SCOTUS and according to most other legal systems. The reasoning is that it is important to stop potentially violent individuals from going on and hurting people, even if they simply are trying to escape and there is no self defense involved.

              Quiet. It’s not nice to interupt a cosmotarian having a snivel-fest about his riiiiiights!

              1. Oh look the psychos have arrived.

                1. Well, you can take that up with SCOTUS; I’m just telling you what the actual legal situation is (Tennessee v. Garner). Before 1985, any fleeing suspect in a felony could be stopped with deadly force, so police powers in this area, they have actually been limited significantly over the last 30 years.

                  If you consider pointing out the current legal situation “psychotic”, frankly, it’s you who has a mental problem.

            2. In a more libertarian world, more people would be carrying concealed weapons, so Brown wouldn’t be going around bullying people with his size because he’d know he’d get shot.

              1. I don’t think it works that way. You can shoot isolated crooks in self-defense, but you can’t shoot crooks that are part of clans or gangs, because you end up dead yourself. Any non-black person who had shot Brown in self-defense would have been lynched by the people of Ferguson. That’s in addition to the psychological cost that shooting anybody involves, even when it’s justified.

                That’s why people want gun control and a strong police: they don’t want to feel an obligation to defend themselves, and they want to outsource the risk and burden.

        2. And if you think police are militarized to protect our property, you’re gonna have a bad time

        3. The police chief last night said that Brown was not a suspect in the robbery and that the cop did not know of the robbery when he first encountered him.

        4. “If it prevents just one robbery, then let municipal police have as many surplus Barret M95s and Strykers as they please.”

          If turning Mayberry PD into the 101st Airborne was an effective deterrent and didn’t result in more rights violated and loss of life than in murders and thefts prevented, then I might be willing to hear you out. Instead, 400 people are killed on average every year in this country by police. Those are not “acceptable losses” as far as I’m concerned.

          Police need to be closer to the people they serve if they’re going to be effective, and turning them into an occupying army is going in the wrong direction.

          But the whole myth of the police being outgunned isn’t the real problem. The sequence of events and array of influences that led to Brown stealing those Swishers, roughing up the store owner, and getting shot like a dog in the street is the real issue. All the Type IV body armor in the world isn’t going to reform the welfare state, or encourage a culture of entrepreneurship among the generational poor, or instill a sense of responsibility and respect for others in kids and young men, or any of the other spinning gears that created this situation.

          1. I dont give a damn about the series of events that led to the robbery. Its a distraction from the issue. Whether Brown was a thug or a saint matters none.

            1. Agreed to the extent that Michael Brown could’ve been Adolph Hitler and shooting him at range while he’s surrendering is murder, plain and simple. And looting is looting, not protesting. AND local PD doesn’t need the capability to invade Bosnia. If that’s what the situation requires, send in the National Guard. That’s what it’s there for.

            2. The dude strong armed a liquor store about 11 minutes before he was shot. While this wasn’t on the cop’s mind, you can bet your ass that it was on Brown’s. Having committed dozens of felonies in my (misguided) youth, seeing police so son after a jack, while adrenaline is still pumping is cause for panic and escalation.

              My opinion on the matter isn’t settled, but were I a betting man this new information would lead me to put my money on the cop’s version of events.

              1. “My opinion on the matter isn’t settled, but were I a betting man this new information would lead me to put my money on the cop’s version of events.”

                We haven’t even heard the cop’s version. There’s some stuff going around about a scuffle of some sort, and then ……………………….. the guy was shot several times from some unknown distance.

        5. “police militarization” (which did a great job of stopping looting from happening tonight, BTW)

          the cop knew about the robbery

          Stop lying.

          1. According to official statements, the cop knew about the robbery but didn’t initially consider the two men he had stopped suspects. That changed when he saw the cigar box.

      2. And what “reforms” do you propose? What faults are they supposed to address?

        The people of Ferguson control their government and police force through voting. They overwhelmingly choose not to vote, end up with a mostly white government, and then complain of racism and destroy their cities in riots when police shoot a violent criminal.

        Do the people of Ferguson need to “reform” their government? Of course they themselves do. But they never have even tried. So what is it you want?

        1. And end to police unionization, sovereign immunity, and no more camo or MRAPS or guns aside from shotguns and revolvers for police. Body cameras.

          1. I didn’t ask what policies you wanted police departments to adopt; that’s obvious. I asked how you intend to make this happen.

            Given that voters could, but choose not to, adopt these rules, obviously some outside force (state, federal government, etc.) would have to impose them. Who do you want to impose those rules, and what’s the justification for imposing them?

          2. I’m with you on most of that, though I don’t have a problem with slightly more advanced weaponry, as long as it’s use appropriately.

            However, the entire narrative about Brown may be wrong. It looks like the “he was surrendering” claim comes from his accomplice in the robbery, and there is some evidence that Brown’s last act was to double back and charge the officer.

  3. Incidentally, from Byron Tau: This Politico article.

    Print, video and photo-journalists were all repeatedly and aggressively threatened and harassed when attempting to photograph or videotape any of the looting or property destruction. Many of the demonstrators expressed concern about being identified by police or told reporters that the looting was none of their concern.

    Reporters were repeatedly and forcefully told to move away, turn around, put down their cameras or simply to leave the area when trying to get close enough to film the scenes of destruction and theft. Most reporters on the scene were simply recording the events as they unfolded ? making no effort to interfere or interview participants in the rioting.

    Someone should tell Byron Tau that this was okay because the first amendment is ‘subject to reasonable time and place restrictions.’

    1. The looters don’t care about the reporter’s first amendment rights, because they don’t want their act of crime to be recorded.

      1. They have that in common with cops.

        1. They have that in common with cops.

          Yep. Sometimes there are no good guys.

          Authoritarian bully cops being authoritarian bullies – check

          Sycophantic and cowardly “journalists” being sycophantic and cowardly – check

          Thug criminals being thug criminals – check.

          It’s like an epidose of Girls. There are no good guys.

          1. “It’s like an episode of Girls. There are no good guys.”

            Come on, it’s HBO; the gay guys are the good guys.

    2. The freedom of the press is only for licensed journalists!

    3. You know, I’ve always found it surprising that people exercising the 1st Amendment seem to feel that it precludes exercising the 2nd as well…

  4. This entire situation is just lousy, though and through. On one side you have cops with no desire to be subject to the rule of law or public scrutiny, and who are doing a poor job of being an aid rather than a stumbling block to the community they serve. OTOH, you have riots whose ultimate achievement thus far has been looting businesses and destroying property unrelated to the incident, creating actual victims whose sympathies will no longer lie with the community. (You also have a frankly bizarre attempt at hagiography from the media of what is obviously a thug.) It seems that a disinterested pursuit of the truth or justice is the last thing anyone wants.

    1. Pretty much. I think I called this last week. There is also a lot of “white guilt” floating around, at least from what I’ve seen on facebook. Like this.

      1. No one will stop and frisk my boys because they look suspicious.

        Well not when they are riding in Mom’s hybrid on their way to private school, soccer practice and music lessons.

        1. I think I’m going to stop saying, “that’s because race is incidental to socioeconomics,” and just start saying, “that’s because upper-middle-class soccer mom’s and their kids don’t look like they need to steal anything.”

          Cops aren’t stopping and frisking well-dressed black men in their 50s. On the other hand, Kid Rock with a hangover is gettin’ a ride to the pokey. It’s not the cop’s fault he can’t tell that junior’s white t-shirt cost $70 at Nordstrom and he’s wearing tailored jeans over $350 tennis shoes. He’s still wearing a po’ drug-dealer uniform, and that means he’s up to no good.

          1. “that’s because race is incidental to socioeconomics,”

            This is something most white Americans, particularly those who live on the coasts or in large urban cities, just don’t get.

            Shocking fact: You can be white and poor and subject to the harassment of the police.

            I’ve had conversations with friends about how I won’t go into certain neighborhoods or approach certain groups of people, not because of race but because of class. Having had the experience of growing up surrounded by poor white trash I can spot a thug or a thug-wanna-be, regardless of race, a mile away.

            While I haven’t personally been harassed by cops – even as a kid – I had too many friends and family members tell of awful experiences to ignore.

            I avoid thugs of all kinds – cops and criminals – same thing.

            1. Despite being white, I’ve managed to wander around East St. Louis unharassed. I hear all kinds of horror stories (my father discovered a dead body in a garbage bag while hooking up a cable line) I’ve never actually had to deal with it. Always seem to get along just fine with the “thug types”.

              Not saying it doesn’t happen, but I’m a lower class fat white guy, and I’ve never once had to deal with that kind of bullshit. I wonder what it is that causes it to happen to other people.

              On the other hand, I HAVE been violently attacked. but not by that type. Just a drunk idiot who needed to vent. When it was over, I had a busted windshield and two cops giving him the business. I was willing to let it go, but the cops explained that if I didn;t rpess charges against him, he would be free to press charges on me, and I’d promptly be arrested.

              So yeah. That.

              1. Also, it seems I cannot spell or type this morning.

        2. I’m white and I’ve been stopped & frisk. I was told I fit a description. When I asked what that description was the cop spit back what I was wearing. Seemed like he just made it up. These people’s blinding white privilege is not my problem. They can ask Seth Adams’ or Chris Roupe’s families about how safe white youth are from cops.

  5. The thing I find puzzling: how did the state troopers who took over on Friday mess up?

    The violence was supposedly down. Then the video was released and everything went to crap.Did they not have a plan to deal with the looters? Was there a breakdown in command and control? Did the Ferguson PD move back in? Did the residents riot violently when the news implying heavilythat Brown was a thug came out?

    1. “tolerance” is my guess

    2. I’m beginning to subscribe to a crazy-conspiracy theory: someone(or several of them, possibly independently) are purposely inciting panic in the cops so they can get them to stop acting “nice” and give them to room to go start looting something again.

      Win-win. They get booty AND the cops get more bad PR.

    3. According to the state police, it was the police chief’s press conference that inflamed the situation and kicked off the violence again,

      If the Ferguson city government is smart, they’ll tell that idiot to shut up and stay away from microphones and cameras until this ends. Every time he opens his mouth, he makes the situation worse.

      1. Excuse me? The criminals tear up businessess because they don’t like what someone says, and you don’t hold the criminals at fault?

        You guys ever wonder why you only get 3% of the vote?

        1. It’s a lot easier to get one guy to shut up than to control a population’s reaction to him. It’s not his right to have unlimited free speech as a police chief. But it is his job to maintain order. Therefore, shut him up, and calm the populous down.

  6. Travis County DA Rosemary Lehmberg Drunk Driving Arrest Dash Cam

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JrxsCH_p1oc

    1. Why would that mean Governor Perry want to cut off the funding to her Public Integrity Unit, she seems the very embodiment of public integrity!

    2. Yeah Holder is using the Justice Department to knock out potential GOP POTUS candidates. He already took Bob McDonnell out of play, now he’s knocking out Perry. Walker will be next.

      1. This shenanigan is going to bump perry into first place.

      2. The indictment was by a Texas jury in state court, but I suspect this is a matter of prosecutors scratching each others’ backs – “cut off my colleagues funding, will he? I’ll teach him!”

    3. Tea Party stalwart Jonathan Chait on the indictment: “To describe the indictment as “frivolous” gives it far more credence than it deserves.”

      http://nymag.com/daily/intelli…..ulous.html

      1. “Tea Party stalwart” is sarcastic.

        1. I like the “Don Corleone” picture, myself.

  7. Then you have this drivel of bullshit-

    Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson denied his department has become militarized.
    “It’s not military, it’s tactical operations,” he said on Thursday. “That’s who’s out there, police. We’re doing this in blue.” -CNN

    1. I forgot that uniforms that aren’t marpat can’t be used for military purposes. Thanks for reminding me, Thomas Jackson!

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