US & Canada

Missouri shooting: Family demand justice

The family of an unarmed black teenager killed by a police officer in a suburb of the US city of St Louis have called for justice for their son.

The father of Michael Brown, 18, told reporters their son was a "good boy" who "deserved none of this".

The FBI and the US justice department's civil rights division have opened an investigation into the shooting.

On Monday night, police used tear gas and rubber bullets to try to disperse a large crowd in the suburb of Ferguson.

Ferguson Police Chief Tom Jackson said a group which had gathered at a burned-out convenience store became rowdy at dusk.

Members of the crowd threw rocks at police, he said, and there was gunfire coming from the crowd.

Earlier in the day, US Attorney General Eric Holder said the case deserves a "fulsome review".

The justice department has also sent its community relations team to the area.

Thirty-two people were arrested on Sunday after unrest broke out in Ferguson following Brown's death.

People looted shops, vandalised cars and stores, and set a building alight as police tried to block off access to several areas of the city.

As residents began the task of cleaning up on Monday, some said they believed the violence was not over.

DeAndre Smith, 30, of Ferguson told the St Louis Post-Dispatch that the rioting reflected a sense of injustice in the community.

"I don't think it's over, honestly," he said. "I just think they got a taste of what fighting back means."

Mayor James Knowles said he understood that people "want to vent their frustrations. We understand they want to speak out", but he added: "We're going to obviously try to urge calm."

Image caption A petrol station was plundered and set on fire after the killing of Michael Brown
Image caption Mourners paid their respects at the spot where Michael Brown was killed on Sunday

The killing has drawn comparisons by some civil rights leaders with the 2012 killing of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin by a Florida neighbourhood watch organiser who was acquitted of murder charges.

Police say Brown was shot several times after a struggle in a police car on Saturday, after an officer encountered Brown and another man on a street in Ferguson.

County Police Chief Jon Belmar said one of the men pushed the officer back into his squad car and a struggle began.

At least one shot was fired from the officer's gun inside the police car, Mr Belmar said, and then the officer shot several more times as Brown ran away.

Dorian Johnson said he was with Michael Brown and he gave a different version of events.

He told local broadcaster WALB a police officer told them to get out of the street and onto the sidewalk, and when they continued walking, the officer confronted them.

Image caption Shops and other businesses in Ferguson were looted and vandalised late on Sunday
Image caption Protesters have called for the police officer to be prosecuted with murder

After the officer fired, Mr Johnson said, he and Brown ran away. Then Brown turned with his hands in the air and started to get down but the officer approached and "fired several more shots".

A resident on the street where the shooting occurred told the Associated Press news agency Brown had his arms raised but the police officer stood over him and shot him.

Police have not commented on such eyewitness reports, citing their ongoing investigation.

The officer involved has been with the Ferguson police department for six years, and has been placed on paid administrative leave, Mr Belmar said.

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