Dozens Arrested as US City Readies for More Protests

Dozens Arrested as US City Readies for More Protests Dozens Arrested as US City Readies for More Protests

Hundreds of police officers in full riot gear responded to the streets of downtown St. Louis after another day of peaceful demonstrations over a former police officer's acquittal in the death of a black man gave way to property damage and dangerous encounters with officers.

Another round of protests was planned for Monday, with demonstrators planning to meet at 7 am near Union Station downtown, AP reported.

A judge on Friday ruled that Jason Stockley, a 36-year-old who left the department and moved to Houston three years ago, was not guilty in the 2011 death of Anthony Lamar Smith. The ruling set off raucous protests throughout the weekend.

Hundreds of people marched through the streets of downtown, the posh Central West End, and the trendy Delmar Loop area of nearby University City. Protesters also marched through two shopping malls in a wealthy area of St. Louis County.

Sunday's protest began at the police headquarters downtown. Following the same pattern of the previous days, well over 1,000 people marched peacefully for several hours.

Things got worse when, according to police, demonstrators sprayed bottles with an unknown substance on officers. Police were still trying to determine what was in the bottles.

One officer suffered a leg injury and was taken to a hospital. His condition was not known.

Police made dozens of arrests shortly before midnight when people ignored orders to disperse.

Protest organizers said they were frustrated that a few people who have caused trouble at night could make it harder to spread their nonviolent message.

The recent St. Louis protests have followed a pattern borne out of months of angry and sometimes violent protests after the 2014 killing of Michael Brown in nearby Ferguson: The majority of demonstrators, though angry, are law-abiding. But as the night wears on, a subsection emerges, a different crowd more willing to confront police, sometimes to the point of a violent interaction.

More than 50 people were arrested over the weekend, all of them late at night. It was after nightfall that people broke a window at the home of Mayor Lynda Krewson on Friday, smashed about two dozen windows and threw trash cans and rocks at police in University City on Saturday, and knocked out windows downtown on Sunday.

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