Residents of Ferguson, a primarily black suburb of St. Louis, have been taking to the streets since Sunday, a day after 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot and killed by a police officer, following an altercation of which the details are still being disputed.
Wednesday's protests in Ferguson started with a peaceful march along West Florissant Avenue, one of the city's main roads. It was led by a number of pastors who would occasionally debate other protesters on the language of the slogans and the message to be conveyed. Some of the older marchers called for unity, but most demonstrators seemed to prefer the "Fuck the Police" chant.
Officers accompanied Wednesday's march throughout — a combination of St Louis County Police, who took over the area from Ferguson police, as well as out of town state officers, with coming from towns a couple hours away.
The crowd was mostly young, and many parents brought their children along. A number of people watched on from the sidelines, and others honked their support from cars as they drove by.
Children walked by the QuikTrip gas station, which was looted and burnt down earlier this week. It has become one of the most potent symbols of the protests and marchers on Wednesday posed there for photos.
Police eventually stopped marchers from continuing at the crossing with Canfield Drive, very close to where Brown was shot. They blocked protesters with a line — in response to which dozens of marchers sat down on the street and refused to move.
Yes, it says FTP on that woman's chest.
After a peaceful — but not friendly — stand-off of about an hour, special operations police and armored vehicles came in and moved on protesters. Officers started telling everyone to leave or get arrested. Some marchers asked what for, but the police wouldn't say. I saw a few people get arrested.
This young mom asked for permission to cross the police line to get to her home on the other side, but officers wouldn't let her through. "At least people with kids, let them go through, my son is terrified," she said. It was notable that even as things got tense, children were all over the place.
One of very few stores that remained opened on West Florissant.
Police started dispersing the crowd from the middle, pushing people away in opposite directions and threatening everyone with arrest if they didn't move.
Officers came into a McDonald's on West Florissant, at first asking the manager if he wanted to close. The manager said he didn't want to and police said: "We're not responsible for what happens here." Moments later they came back, saying that they had decided to close the restaurant and everyone had to leave.
It later emerged that two journalists, Ryan Reilly of the Huffington Post and Wesley Lowery from the Washington Post, were arrested in this McDonald's.
I was locked into a residential area in my car for a couple of hours by police that had blocked all the entrances and fired tear gas.
This is the photo I was taking when officers asked me if I wanted to get shot.
Local teens waited for last cops to leave the area.
In a different part of Ferguson, protesters stood outside the local police station — where those arrested were taken — and chanted "We are all Mike Brown," while cars honked their support as they drove by.