FLORISSANT, Missouri (AP) – Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon says the Missouri State Highway Patrol will take over the supervision of security in the St. Louis suburb that’s been the scene of violent protests since a police officer fatally shot an unarmed black teenager.
Nixon made the announcement at a news conference Thursday.
Nixon says security will be overseen by Capt. Ron Johnson of the Highway Patrol. Johnson, who is black, said he grew up in the community and “it means a lot to me personally that we break this cycle of violence.”
Crowds have gathered in Ferguson since Saturday’s shooting of Michael Brown to protest the 18-year-old’s death.
Police defended the use of tear gas and smoke bombs to repel demonstrators after another night of chaos. But the police response has drawn heavy criticism.