Protesters in a Missouri city about 20 minutes outside Ferguson are planning to shut the St. Louis suburb down the first business day after the Michael Brown grand jury announcement, a local news outlet reported.
According to KTVI-TV, a meeting billed as a training session was held Thursday to prepare for the grand jury decision on whether or not to indict Ferguson officer Darren Wilson.
In this Aug. 17, 2104 file photo people defy a curfew before smoke and tear gas was fired to disperse a crowd protesting the shooting of teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo. Missouri police, in advance of a grand jury decision on whether to charge a white police officer who fatally shot a black 18-year-old, are making extensive preparations hoping to avoid a repeat of violent clashes between protesters and police. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel, File)
Organizers said they plan to have hundreds, if not thousands, of demonstrators arrive in the city of Clayton to protest a possible decision, KTVI reported.
Smaller groups would then separate from the group and move to shut down highway exits, block traffic, and take part in other acts of civil disobedience. According to KTVI, the acts would only last for a few short period of time.
A demonstrator protests outside the police station on November 10, 2014 in Ferguson, Missouri. Residents in the St. Louis suburb are hoping to avoid a repeat of rioting which broke out after teenager Michael Brown was killed by Darren Wilson, a Ferguson police officer, if the grand jury investigating the shooting does not find justification to prosecute Wilson. The grand jurys decision is expected sometime in November. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)
The meetings organizers, however, stressed they wanted to keep the demonstrations non-violent.
“We want the people to know these meetings are about non-violence direct action. Some of it will be people talking people expressing themselves. There’s nothing we’re doing to try to create violence. We don’t want to diminish tension without there being change.” Don’t Shoot Coalition Co-Chair Michael McPhearson told KTVI.
[sharequote align="center"]"We don't want to diminish tension without there being change."[/sharequote]
Local law enforcement has been gearing up in the past couple weeks in preparation of the grand jury announcement.
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