Just hours after Ferguson, MO police chief Thomas Jackson submitted his resignation - the latest in a string of Ferguson officials to resign in the week since a scathing Justice Department report found widespread racially biased abuses in the city's policing and municipal court, and also found that the city used police as a collection agency, citing traffic citations to black residents to boost city coffers through fines, creating a "toxic environment" - two police Ferguson officers were shot during a protest outside Ferguson, Missouri police headquarters early on Thursday.
Belmar said shots fired at officers were "parallel to the ground" which he said tells him they were targets— Christine Byers (@ChristineDByers) March 12, 2015
The good news is that unlike the fatal double murder of two NYPD officers on December 20, this time both officers are expected to survive. St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar told reporters early on Thursday that a 41-year-old officer from his department was struck in the shoulder and a 32-year-old officer from the nearby Webster Groves Police Department was hit in the face around midnight as the crowd was starting to break up.
Quoted by Reuters, Belmar said that "These police officers were standing there and they were shot, just because they were police officers. I have said all along, that we cannot sustain this forever without problems."
More from Reuters:
Several dozen protesters had gathered in front of the Ferguson police department on Wednesday night, just hours after Police Chief Thomas Jackson resigned.
The demonstration started peacefully, but about two dozen officers clad in riot gear later faced off with the protesters. At least two people were taken into custody.
Around midnight, gunshots rang out, turning a scene of relative quiet into pandemonium. Many of the remaining few dozen demonstrators fled, some screaming, "They hit a cop," a Reuters photographer said.
The line of police scrambled, with many taking defensive positions drawing their weapons and some huddling behind riot shields, according to a video published online.
Belmar said the shooter was "embedded" among the demonstrators standing across from the officers.
"I don't know who did the shooting to be honest with you right now, but somehow they were embedded in that group of folks," he said.
Or, some folks shot some cops.
As RT further reports, an amateur video has emerged online showing exactly the moment two policemen were shot during a rally near Ferguson police department. The video is a low-resolution one and is more about what one can hear than what one can see.
Sounds of gunfire are distinctly heard, followed by loud screams as well as the groaning of a man who was hit. Ferguson police station is seen and people running away in panic.