Security stepped up ahead of Ferguson grand jury decision

Police stepped up security and erected barricades in St Louis on Sunday, bracing for the worst with a grand jury to decide whether to indict a white officer for shooting dead an unarmed black teenager.

AFP| Updated: Nov 24, 2014, 01:23 AM IST

Ferguson: Police stepped up security and erected barricades in St Louis on Sunday, bracing for the worst with a grand jury to decide whether to indict a white officer for shooting dead an unarmed black teenager.

Michael Brown, 18, a high-school graduate planning to go to technical college, was shot at least six times by Darren Wilson in the St Louis suburb of Ferguson on August 9, inflaming racial tensions and sparking weeks of protests, some violent.

The mostly black suburb of 21,000, which has an overwhelmingly white police force and town government, has been on edge for several days in anticipation of the jury's decision.

Metal interlocking fences and orange plastic barricades sealed off the Buzz Westfall Justice Center in Clayton, another suburb of the city of St. Louis and where the grand jury has been meeting, with a handful of uniformed officers on duty outside.

A police officer unfurled yellow tape saying, "St Louis Police Lines" and "Do Not Cross" around the barricades, watched by a clutch of journalists in the rain.

Five TV satellite trucks were parked outside, although US media has reported no decision is likely this weekend, with the jury expected to reconvene tomorrow at the earliest.

Owners have boarded up shops and businesses in the part of Ferguson where protests were concentrated in August, also braced for a violent fallout if the jury does not indict Wilson.