A day after the city of Ferguson marked the first anniversary of the fatal police shooting that killed unarmed black teenager Michael Brown, nonviolent demonstrators, including activist and philosopher Cornel West and Black Lives Matter organizer Johnetta Elzie, were arrested in St. Louis. Demonstrators were seen jumping over police barricades outside a federal courthouse during a planned sit-in protest demanding the suspension of the Ferguson police department.
— Ryan J. Reilly (@ryanjreilly) August 10, 2015
Arrests underway at the peaceful protest outside the St. Louis federal courthouse. pic.twitter.com/zMVLSdJwpc
— Mitch Smith (@MitchKSmith) August 10, 2015
— Yamiche Alcindor (@Yamiche) August 10, 2015
Cornel West just got arrested together with around 40 other activists BlackLivesMatter pic.twitter.com/lkMwHkgEZE
— Lorena de la Cuesta (@LorenadlaCuesta) August 10, 2015
Should be noted peaceful protesters at fed courthouse in downtown St Louis are being arrested by officers from the Dept of Homeland Security
— Jon Swaine (@jonswaine) August 10, 2015
According to MSNBC, demonstrators joined the #MoralMonday sit-in expecting to be arrested. Shortly before getting apprehended, Elzie tweeted a reference to the arrest of Sandra Bland, who died in police custody last month:
If I’m arrested today please know I’m not suicidal. I have plenty to live for. I did not resist, I’m just black.
— ShordeeDooWhop (@Nettaaaaaaaa) August 10, 2015
The arrests come just hours after St. Louis County issued a state of emergency in light of the violence that erupted late Sunday night after a police officer shot a man they say opened fire at them.
— zellie (@zellieimani) August 10, 2015
The shooting ended a weekend of largely peaceful protests commemorating Brown’s death.