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Riots, protests and what you need to know

Following a St. Louis County grand jury decision that has sparked heated controversy nationwide, Officer Darren Wilson - the law enforcement official responsible for the shooting death of 18-year-old Michael Brown - was not indicted, meaning jurors could find no probable cause to file charges against the officer.

Shortly after the decision was revealed, Ferguson, MO, broke into riots similar to the ones that tore through the suburb in mid-August after news about Brown's death sent shockwaves through the community. 

The decision not to indict Darren Wilson has proven to be a divisive one, with many people failing to see eye to eye on the issue. A recent Opinion Outpost poll asked some 9,800 individuals: "Do you agree with the grand jury's decision?" Roughly 46 percent of respondents answered "yes, he should not have been indicted," while the remaining 54 percent of survey takers answered "no, he should have been indicted." 

The Ferguson riots
Thrown into turmoil, Ferguson is still reeling from the effects of the riots. According to the Chicago Tribune, the August riots caused perhaps $5 million in property damage, according to insurance adjuster claims. That was after 28 businesses were reported to have been burglarized. Estimators have yet to calculate the damage caused by the most recent riots directly following the grand jury decision, but the amount may be far higher as cars were flipped and set on fire and even a local business was burnt to the ground.

The Eric Garner Protests
In another turn of events, a grand jury declined to indict NYPD officer Daniel Pantaleo following another unarmed man - Eric Garner - was killed after being subdued in a chokehold. The New York Medical Examiner stated that Garner's death was an act of homicide caused by compression of the neck and complicating health factors, according to MSNBC. 

Following the second case, thousands of people have taken part in active protests and sit ins where activists lay on the ground unmoving - an act the media has termed a die-in. These protests have occurred in several major cities and continue to highlight the controversy over police brutality and race relations in the country.

Ordinary citizens aren't the only activists spreading the word about the conflict either. NFL players on the St. Louis Rams wore shirts and cleats embellished with the message "I Can't Breathe" recently, according to The Associated Press. "I can't breathe" were some of the last words Garner said before dying, according to a video taken by a witness.

A time of riots 
As far as corrupt and violent police forces go, Ferguson residents and Garner activists aren't the only people rioting and protesting in the world. Just recently, protestors in Mexico set fire to the national palace in riots over 43 students that were allegedly abducted by police and given to a local drug gang for execution, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Meanwhile, in Hong Kong, police and protestors recently clashed in a dispute that centers around the democracy of the region after the city came under Chinese control.


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