One shot, 7 arrested in Ferguson riot
The violence in Ferguson continued despite a midnight to 5 AM curfew as police fired tear gas and made a show of force in front of stores to prevent looting.
But gunfire erupted after the curfew was imposed, critically injuring a man.
Johnson said officials had received reports of armed subjects inside a barbecue restaurant where demonstrators had gathered. One person came into the street carrying a gun, and police deployed smoke canisters in an effort to push back the crowd, Johnson said.
Once police received a report that someone had been shot, they deployed tear gas in an attempt to reach the victim. The shooting victim was taken to the hospital in a private citizen’s car, he said.
“Also a police car at that location was shot at. We can’t confirm that it was hit, it was shot at,” he said.
The people inside the barbecue restaurant fled as police approached, Johnson said.
During the course of the night, "I did hear several gunshots fired into the air," he added.
Antonio French, a St. Louis alderman who was trying to get the crowd of demonstrators in the street to disperse after curfew fell, told the Los Angeles Times that he heard gunshots come from a “hard-core” group that didn't scatter when other demonstrators did.
The evening unfolded with police deploying several armored personnel carriers and vans filled with scores of riot police. Protesters had advanced toward a press cordon where dozens of journalists watched from a distance.
“This is the Police Department! You are violating the state-imposed curfew,” a voice called out on a bullhorn.
A protester replied, also via bullhorn: “We have the right to assemble peacefully. ... We are Mike Brown! We are Mike Brown! We are Mike Brown!”
Then a police leader, behind the lines, called out, “Gas, gas, gas!” and the police fired smoke-filled canisters, though it was unclear whether they contained tear gas. A police line inched ahead.
Curfews are useful, but must be enforced. The fact that there were only 7 arrests made when hundreds were out after midnight might be good community relations, but could also result in more curfew violators in succeeding nights.