Fires burn in Ferguson, gunshots heard in streets
FERGUSON, Missouri (AP) — Flames engulfed businesses and vehicles in Ferguson early Tuesday as gunfire kept firefighters at bay after protests over the decision not to indict a police officer in Michael Brown’s death turned violent.
Protesters smashed windows out of police cars and buildings, several of which were later looted and set ablaze. Police lobbed tear gas from inside armored vehicles to disperse crowds in scenes reminiscent of the early days of unrest that followed the Aug. 9 shooting.
But the violence that followed Monday’s decision not to indict Officer Darren Wilson, who is white, in the death of the unarmed black 18-year-old quickly took a more destructive turn — a storage facility, two auto parts stores, a beauty supply store and pizza shop were just some of the businesses that burned.
An AP photographer saw firefighters arrive at one scene only to be turned back by gunfire.
Smashed window glass littered the sidewalks around many other businesses, from locally owned shops to a McDonalds along the main drag. The Ferguson Market — where surveillance video had recorded Brown stealing cigars minutes before he was killed — was ransacked.