ST. LOUIS — The Latest on protests over the acquittal of a white former St. Louis police officer in the killing of a black suspect (all times local):
Violence has erupted after hundreds of police moved in to confront a small group of protesters who refused to disperse after a march in the St. Louis suburb of University City, a popular area with restaurants, bars and shopping.
Shortly before 11 p.m. Saturday, the police formed lines and pushed the demonstrators down the street, eventually announcing that the protest had become unlawful and ordering demonstrators to disperse.
Protesters fled down the street, throwing items such as water bottles, trash cans and trash can lids at police and breaking business windows as they went. There was a constant pop, pop, pop of breaking glass.
People scrambled for safety in alleys and parking garages. Restaurant patrons huddled in corners to remain safe.
It was unclear if anyone was injured. Several people were seen in handcuffs.
After three hours of marching and chanting in and near a popular entertainment district in the St. Louis suburb of University City, protesters have disbanded with plans to gather and demonstrate again Sunday afternoon in St. Louis.
Police had maintained a heavy presence, including a helicopter overhead, but never deployed officers during the peaceful march Saturday evening.
The quiet evening came after Friday night’s marches, where there was sporadic vandalism and violence. Some in the group went to Mayor Lyda Krewson’s home and broke a window and splattered paint. A heavy police contingent responded and eventually broke up that group with tear gas.
St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson is encouraging residents not to change their plans as protesters stage a second day of marches and disruptions after the acquittal of a white former police officer who fatally shot a black man.
Both Krewson and interim police Chief Lawrence O’Toole said the protests have been largely peaceful and residents shouldn’t change plans because of them.
Krewson says she’s disappointed that concerts by U2 and English singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran had been canceled this weekend.
Protesters broke a window and splattered red paint on Krewson’s house Friday night. She wasn’t home, but her family was. She called the vandalism “irritating,” but said she thinks the issues that have stirred the protests are “real impediments to the success of our city.”
St. Louis police say there…