Organizers for the Ferguson October "Weekend of Resistance" capped off multiple days of noisy demonstrations yesterday with "Moral Monday," which consisted of a string of acts of civil disobedience and multiple arrests. Starting in the morning with two separate actions in Ferguson and continuing well into the night, protesters took to the Ferguson police department, the Emerson Electric Co. world headquarters, Plaza Frontenac, St. Louis city hall, the Rams game at Edward Jones Dome, a Webster Groves fundraiser for County Councilman Steve Stenger, three Walmarts, a QuikTrip on St. Charles Rock Road, the Clayton Justice Center and Hollywood Casino.
Activist and author Cornel West was among those arrested, during a protest at the Ferguson PD shortly after noon. Rapper and RFT Music columnist Tef Poe was arrested as well, during an act of civil disobedience within the Walmart in Maplewood.
Area Walmarts were targeted by protesters as a show of solidarity for John Crawford III, a man who was killed by police just outside of Dayton, Ohio, in early August. Officers in that incident responded to a 911 call that Crawford was armed with a gun inside a Walmart, ultimately culminating in deadly use of force. The gun in question turned out to be a toy gun for sale at the store; video surveillance shows that Crawford did not point the gun at anyone or otherwise act inappropriately, and was in fact talking on the phone with the mother of his children when he was shot. The officers in that case were not indicted.
The scene of the arrest was the second area Walmart the protesters visited last night, following a stop at the Ferguson store and preceding a stop in Bridgeton. Tef can be seen in one of the photos above carrying a banner that reads "Toy Guns Don't Kill R.I.P. John Crawford." In another you can see the moment of his arrest, which was also captured on video (below).
Tef and the other six people arrested in this incident were released from the Richmond Heights police department early Tuesday morning. According to police over fifty arrests were made in relation to yesterday's protests alone.
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