Residents in Ferguson, Missouri and neighboring cities are buying firearms to protect themselves against violence expected after a St. Louis County grand jury decides the fate of Darren Wilson, the police officer who shot and killed Michael Brown.
On Monday, CNN interviewed a number of people in the town who recently purchased weapons and received training at a local shooting range.
A local gun merchant told CNN customers bought 100 guns over the weekend. In nearby Bridgeton, the manager of a shooting range said gun sales are up 40 to 50% as of last week. Most of the weapons are home defense shotguns.
Many residents are also receiving firearms training. Customers told the manager they have bought guns and are receiving training in anticipation of violence following a ruling on the Brown shooting.
The mayor of Ferguson, James Knowles, told CNN he is concerned about the increase in gun sales.
Knowles said it is a “little frightening” citizens are arming themselves. He has instructed police to be wary of new gun owners who may be “less trained may not have… restraint.”
Call for Feds to Place Ferguson Police Dept. in Receivership
Meanwhile, the mother of Michael Brown will appear before the United Nations this week. She will demand the resignation of Ferguson’s police chief. She also believes the police department in the town should be taken over by the federal government.
The Guardian reports:
In addition to the resignation of chief Thomas Jackson and the placement of his police force in federal receivership, [Lesley McSpadden and Michaelt Brown Sr.] request the immediate arrest of Darren Wilson, the officer who shot their son dead following an altercation at Wilson’s SUV. The 28-year-old officer has been in hiding since shortly after the 9 August shooting.
The official autopsy on Michael Brown shows that the teenager was shot at close range during “a significant altercation at the car.”
The St. Louis County autopsy “supports the fact that this guy is reaching for the gun, if he has gunpowder particulate material in the wound,” said Dr. Judy Melinek, a forensic pathologist in San Francisco.
“If he has his hand near the gun when it goes off, he’s going for the officer’s gun,” she added.
In addition to gun powder residue, Brown’s blood was discovered on Wilson’s firearm.
The autopsy results conflict with eye witness testimony stating Brown was shot while running away or surrendering with his hands up.
Melinke said Brown was facing Wilson when he was shot. He took a fatal shot to the forehead, two shots to the chest and a shot to the upper right arm. The forensic pathologist said the wound to Brown’s head shows he was falling forward or lunging for Wilson.