In an effort to quell the chaos which has ravaged the community of Ferguson, Missouri, law enforcement enacted a curfew to maintain a level of peace during the nighttime hours. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look as though this strategy has been successful.
Riot police in armored vehicles arrested seven individuals early this morning who refused to hold off protesting in order to adhere to the curfew.
There has been a clear disconnect between the governor of Missouri, Jay Nixon, and the law enforcement who are trying valiantly to keep the violence in St. Louis under wraps. Earlier today, Nixon slammed police for releasing footage of Michael Brown robbing a convenience store, saying that police “clearly are attempting to besmirch a victim of a shooting.”
As more details begin to surface regarding the character of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown, it is becoming clear that he was no angel. It’s not law enforcement’s fault that he made the decision to participate in a strong-arm robbery.
Also overnight, a man was shot and critically wounded, but not by police. Someone shot at a police car as well, officials said.
Nixon said during a press conference, which was repeatedly interrupted by those who oppose the curfew he is enforcing:
“I am committed to making sure the forces of peace and justice prevail. We must first have and maintain peace. This is a test. The eyes of the world are watching.”
Nixon enacted the curfew after declaring a state of emergency on Saturday.
As reported by Al Jazeera America:
But as the curfew deadline arrived early Sunday, remaining protesters refused to leave the area as officers spoke through a loudspeaker: “You are in violation of a state-imposed curfew. You must disperse immediately.”
As officers put on gas masks, a chant from the distant crowd emerged: “We have the right to assemble peacefully.”
Shortly after, police began firing canisters into the crowd. Highway Patrol Spokesman Lt. John Hotz initially said police only used smoke, but later told The Associated Press they had also used tear gas canisters.
“Obviously, we’re trying to give them every opportunity to comply with the curfew,” Hotz said.
Governor Nixon has not announced how long the curfew will be in effect. It appears to be a failed attempt to maintain order at this time.
Would you adhere to a state-mandate curfew in an emergency situation such as this? Or do you believe it is a violation of civil liberties? Tell us in the comments section!
(Read More: An Open Letter To St. Louis Race Rioters)