Political activist Cornel West was among the 49 people arrested during the “Moral Monday” march in Ferguson, Missouri this week. CNN reports that police arrested West and 42 of the protesters, who were calling for the arrest of the policeman who shot and killed teenager Michael Brown in August, for disturbing the peace after they allegedly attempted to break through a police line. West had been marching, arm in arm, with religious leaders of different faiths. The six others who were arrested had reportedly blocked traffic and refused to clear a roadway.
Police also reportedly arrested protesters at a Ferguson Walmart, and authorities were said to have handcuffed some who came to a fundraiser in Webster Groves for County Executive Steve Stenger.
West, who is a professor at New York’s Union Theological Seminary, was the featured speaker at a rally, which 2,000 people attended, Sunday night. “Everybody knows if you shoot somebody down, you should be arrested,” West told the crowd. He also asked the crowd to focus its anger toward developing a plan to affect change. “We’re here because we love the young folks,” he said, according to The New York Times.
The amount of protests had diminished in recent weeks, according to CNN. But on Sunday, protesters threw rocks at police and attempted to “storm” a store, according a tweet by to St. Louis police chief Sam Dotson. That incident was in protest of the death of 18-year-old Vonderrit Myers, Jr., a black teen whom a white police offer shot on Wednesday. Police have said that Myers was armed, but the teen’s family disputes that claim. The death prompted protests from two groups in the city’s Shaw neighborhood.
On Monday, around 200 people marched from the site where Myers was shot, carrying signs that said, “Black Lives Matter.” The protest was peaceful.
Late last month, Ferguson police chief Tom Jackson made a public apology to Brown’s family, apologizing for the loss of Brown’s life and for waiting a reported four hours to move his body. He also apologized for his department’s behavior toward protesters. A day later, he attempted to march with protesters but made it only a few yards before policemen attempted to make their way up to him, taking a reported four protesters into custody.