ST. LOUIS (AP) — Officers arrested at least nine people and deployed tear gas amid protests in St. Louis over the death of a black 18-year-old who was fatally shot by police after he pointed a gun at them, the city’s police chief said.

Chief Sam Dotson said at a press conference late Wednesday night that a group of protesters who had blocked an intersection threw glass bottles and bricks at officers and refused orders to clear the roadway. Inert gas was used and when that didn’t have any effect on the crowd, police turned to tear gas to clear the intersection, Dotson said. Those arrested face charges of impeding the flow of traffic and resisting arrest, he said.

The demonstration was one of several Wednesday after the killing of 18-year-old Mansur Ball-Bey of St. Louis. It comes with tensions already high in the area after violence erupted during several events marking the anniversary of the death of Michael Brown, the 18-year-old fatally shot last year by a police officer in nearby Ferguson.

Two police officers serving a search warrant Wednesday afternoon at a home in a crime-troubled section of the city’s north side encountered two suspects, one of which was Ball-Bey, the chief said. The suspects were fleeing the home as Ball-Bey, who was black, turned and pointed a handgun at the officers, who shot him, Dotson said. He died at the scene.

Both officers, who are white, were unharmed, according to a police report.

Police are searching for the second suspect, who they said is believed to be in his mid- to late teens.

Dotson said four guns, including the handgun wielded by the dead suspect, and crack cocaine were recovered at or near the home, which last year yielded illegal guns during a police search.

A man and woman who were also inside the home were arrested, Dotson said.

Roughly 150 people gathered Wednesday afternoon near the scene of the shooting, questioning the use of deadly force. Some chanted “Black Lives Matter,” a mantra used after Brown’s death.

As police removed their yellow tape that cordoned off the scene, dozens of people converged on the home’s front yard, many chanting insults and gesturing obscenely at officers. Several onlookers surrounded individual officers, yelling at them.

“Another youth down by the hands of police,” Dex Dockett, 42, who lives nearby, told a reporter. “What could have been done different to de-escalate rather than escalate? They (police) come in with an us-against-them mentality. You’ve got to have the right kind of cops to engage in these types of neighborhoods.”

Another neighborhood resident, Fred Price, said he was skeptical about Dotson’s account that the suspect pointed a gun at officers before being mortally wounded.

“They provoked the situation,” Price, 33, said. “Situations like this make us want to keep the police out of the neighborhood. They’re shooting first, then asking questions.”

In addition to the nine arrests at the Wednesday night demonstration, officers responded to reports of burglaries in the area and the fire department was called after a car was set ablaze, according to Dotson.

He blamed the crimes on people seeking “notoriety” in a neighborhood “plagued by violence.”

The area is near where a 93-year-old veteran who was part of the famed Tuskegee Airmen — the U.S. military’s first black aviators — was the victim of crimes twice within a few minutes Sunday, being robbed and then having his car stolen. The veteran was unhurt, and his car was found Tuesday blocks from where it was taken.

Protests have become a familiar scene across the St. Louis region since Brown, who was black and unarmed, was fatally shot by Ferguson officer Darren Wilson on Aug. 9, 2014. A St. Louis County grand jury and the U.S. Justice Department declined to charge Wilson, who resigned in November.

Some of those who protested Ball-Bey’s killing had already spent the morning in downtown St. Louis, marching to mark the anniversary of the fatal police shooting of Kajieme Powell. He was fatally shot by two St. Louis officers after police said he approached them with a knife. Circuit Attorney Jennifer Joyce is still reviewing the case to determine whether lethal force was justified.

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(Photo Source: AP)

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6 thoughts on “Protests in St. Louis After Police Shooting of Suspect, 18

  1. ambientbake on said:

    St. Louis residents: Please get control of your young men of a certain color. Their violence, disrespect, and irresponsibility is destroying your city & turning it into a zoo.

  2. Timothy Green on said:

    Are the neighborhood residence disputing that this was a “drughouse”?? No … well its sad that this young man is dead but it sounds as if he had decided his own path towards destruction … it’s easier to argue this young mans terrible life decisions than it is to criticize the cops split second actions .. im unfortunately not ready to shed tears

  3. African American Woman on said:

    Kates…as usual, right on point. That’s why there is no workable solution. No one even mentioned the vet who got robbed; he’s the real victim those idiots should be rallying for. I agree, the police should leave them to their own devices and let them work it out since “black lives matter” so much, I’m sure they will be nice and civil to one another. Kates, you for to fo over to the Huckabee article and see the nonsense posted there if you want a real laugh.

  4. “Situations like this make us want to keep the police out of the neighborhood”. Notice he didn’t say it makes us want to keep the thugs, thieves and gangbangers out of the neighborhood. Just the police. I think the police should give them what they want. Stop responding to calls in the hood. Then after they kill each other off (which they surely will), then the neighborhoods can be rebuilt and reoccupied by humans instead of rabid animals.

  5. Mansur Ball-Bey was that his street name? how about a protest for the 93 yo Tuskegee airman who fought both Nazis and Racist so Black thug lives only matter could disrupt and cause disorder, only to robbed repeatedly.
    The reason such things aren’t protested is “aint notin in that” bringing to light those tragedy’s in the community for one is embarrassing so focus on thugs being shot by police in the commission of crimes and simple minded non thinking people will follow BIIIIGGG money and notoriety in the grievance industry. The Michael Brown shooting was turned into a get out and vote cry from Obama on down, OK vote for what the people (predominately black) in Ferguson voted for the people that run that city but non-thinking people bought in to it, I’m sure this mans mama will be in front of a camera talking about how he was to start college and was a good boy.

  6. African American Woman on said:

    De-escalate the situation?!?! Are you kidding me?? What were they supposed to do, say, come on, nice gentleman, please put the gun down. This is why this black lives matter movement is useless…how do people come out to defend a criminal who doesn’t give a damn about about his community, the people in it, or anyone else. These fools just want something to whine about. Black lives matter??? Why not protest for the innocent black children who’ve lost their lives or loved ones due to the violence in their communities. That would be a valid black lives matter protest.

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