One year after the police shooting of an unarmed black teen thrust Ferguson, Missouri, into the national spotlight, the St. Louis suburb is bracing for a weekend of protests over continued complaints of police violence.
Civil rights activists, religious leaders and others from around the United States are converging on the mostly black community of about 21,000 to commemorate the life and death of 18-year-old Michael Brown, and to call for improvements in relations with police.
The events, many organized by Brown’s father, include marches, concerts and a moment of silence Sunday at midday on the street where Brown was killed on Aug. 9, 2014.
“I’m expecting hundreds if not thousands of people,” said Tommie Pierson Sr., pastor of the Greater St. Mark Family Church, where a service honoring Brown is scheduled this weekend. “We are not anticipating any violence. However, you have to always be prepared.”