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Chaos Reigns In Ferguson After Grand Jury Decision

By Chuck Sudo in News on Nov 25, 2014 3:20PM

After the grand jury in Ferguson, Missouri decided not to indict police officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of Michael Brown, author Roxane Gay, like scores of others, took to Twitter to post her frustrations with the decision. Gay summarized it thus:

Michael Brown’s family had to act nobler in the face of the grand jury’s decision Monday night, as Prosecuting Attorney Robert McCulloch blamed the 24-hour news cycle, social media, conflicting eyewitness accounts, protesters, children who don’t believe in Santa Claus, anyone but Wilson for Brown’s death. Even, as McCulloch explained with some deft verbal judo, “there is no question of course that Darren Wilson caused the death of Michael Brown by shooting him.”

The protests against the decision began almost as soon as it was made public. Outside the Ferguson police office a tense group of demonstrators broke into chants of "these killer cops have got to go."

Looters torched businesses and cars and police responded with tear gas, smoke grenades and other crowd dispersion techniques; the juxtaposition of the scene in Ferguson as President Obama called for calm was jarring, to say the least.

As the skirmishes between police and looters in the crowd continued Brown's mother, Lesley McSpadden, railed against the decision. "Everybody wants me to be calm. Do they know how those bullets hit my son? What they did to his body as they entered his body?" McSpadden shouted as others in the crowd called to "burn this bitch down."

"They don't care." McSpadden added.

University of Missouri student and Ferguson resident Brittnay Montgomery expressed her frustration with both the police and the looters among the protestors.

“None of us is safe,” Montgomery said adding the looters were “uneducated people acting up — this is where we live!”

The release of the grand jury testimony, including photos of Wilson's injuries, did little to assuage the collective anger of demonstrators. Wilson, who testified for four hours before the jury, said he shot Brown in self-defense after Brown went for his gun. Brown "looked like a demon," according to Wilson.

"The only way I can describe it is I felt like a five-year-old holding onto Hulk Hogan," Wilson, who is 6'4 and 210 pounds, said of Brown, who was also 6'4 and approximately 290.

Jurors also had a chance to look at photos showing the injuries Wilson suffered in the incident.

The protests weren't relegated to Missouri. In Chicago, dozens of demonstrators marched from the Chicago Police Headquarters to the Thompson Center to protest police shootings. Protesters in New York City shut down bridges and splattered Police Commissioner Bill Bratton with fake blood at a protest in Times Square. Marchers in Washington, DC called for changes to the criminal justice system while a protest by nearly 1,000 people in Oakland shut down the I-580 freeway.