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Unarmed black man, Ezell Ford, shot by police in LA

LA Shooting
While the country is still reeling from the news and aftermath of the fatal shooting by police of unarmed Ferguson, Mo., teen Michael Brown, KTLA is reporting that a 25-year-old mentally challenged man, who his family says was complying with officers, was shot and killed while lying on the ground. He also was unarmed.
 
According to the news station, Ezell Ford, 25, was only blocks from his South Los Angeles home Monday when officers stopped him. Police claim that it was an "investigative stop" but have not stated why Ford was being investigated. According to police, a struggle ensued and police "opened fire," indicates a Los Angeles Police Department news release issued Tuesday and viewed by the news station.

After Michael Brown’s killing, echoes of the ’65 Watts rebellion

watts reflection
The killing of Missouri teenager Michael Brown by police, followed by two consecutive nights of racial upheaval in his hometown of Ferguson, coincides with the anniversary of one of the nation’s biggest civil disturbances.
 
Forty-nine years ago this week, Los Angeles’ Watts neighborhood erupted into a weeklong urban rebellion in the aftermath of a confrontation between police and local black residents.

Racial tensions are not new in St. Louis suburb

ferguson
FERGUSON, Mo. — Racial tensions have run high for decades in this former railroad town that was once a mostly white St. Louis suburb until school busing and urban decay sent many families packing for more distant communities.
 
Today, Ferguson is nearly 70 percent black, but the law here is still enforced by a police department that is more than 90 percent white, a fact that helps engender widespread distrust of officers — never more so than last weekend, when a white officer shot and killed an unarmed young black man who was about to start college.

Police, protesters again clash outside St. Louis

protests
FERGUSON, Mo. — Police in riot gear fired tear gas into a crowd of protesters in a St. Louis suburb where an unarmed black teenager had been fatally shot by police over the weekend, as tension rose even amid calls for collective calm.
 
Between two nights of unrest, a community forum hosted by the local NAACP chapter Monday night drew hundreds to a sweltering church in Ferguson, the nearly 70 percent black St. Louis County suburb where an unarmed 18-year-old, Michael Brown, was shot multiple times by a police officer.

Black kids don’t have to be college-bound for their deaths to be tragic

MO teen
Another unarmed black boy has been shot down by police. Absorbing the ongoing news of the investigation Monday morning, I listened to eyewitness interviews and looked on as the media flashed pictures of Michael Brown, the 18 year old gunned down by a Ferguson, Mo., police officer over the weekend.
 
The repeated refrain in so many of the accounts is, "Brown was supposed to start college on Monday." In the photos accompanying stories from outlets more sympathetic to his plight, he's often pictured in a high school graduation cap and gown. Social media posts use his planned next steps to underscore the tragedy of his life cut short. His educational status even makes its way into headlines, sometimes to the exclusion of his age, his name or the word "unarmed":