The shooting death of a black teenager that sparked anger in a St Louis community was started by a fight between the victim and an officer in a squad car that quickly escalated, police said on Sunday.
Police said Michael Brown, 18, physically assaulted the officer from the Ferguson police, who then fired multiple shots at Brown after he left the car on Saturday. The officer, who was not identified, is a six-year veteran and has been put on administrative leave, St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar told a news conference.
“It is our understanding at this point in the investigation, that within the police car, there was a struggle over the officer’s weapon,” Belmar told reporters as voices from demonstrators shouting outside the building could be heard. Belmar said it appeared one shot was fired during the struggle in the police car.
A crowd of some 200 people gathered at the site of the shooting on Saturday, some of them shouting “kill the police” and yelling profanities, a county police spokesman said.
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