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Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:16 PM

Federal judge limits St. Louis police conduct during protests

Source: Reuters

#U.S. NOVEMBER 15, 2017 / 9:39 PM / UPDATED 14 HOURS AGO

Federal judge limits St. Louis police conduct during protests

Chris Kenning
3 MIN READ

(Reuters) - A federal judge ruled Wednesday that St. Louis police cannot shut down non-violent demonstrations and employ chemical agents to punish protesters, dealing a victory to a civil liberties group that challenged the police response to protests.

U.S. District Judge Catherine Perry issued her order following complaints of misconduct during protests that gripped the city after the Sept. 15 acquittal of white former officer Jason Stockley on murder charges in the killing of black suspect Anthony Lamar Smith, 24, in December 2011.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Missouri filed a lawsuit in U.S. district court in St. Louis on Sept. 22, alleging that police used excessive force and retaliated against people engaging in activities protected by the First Amendment.

Protesters cited anger over tactics including the use of pepper spray and “kettling,” in which officers form a square surrounding protesters to make arrests. Some caught inside police lines said officers used excessive force.

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Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-missouri-crime/federal-judge-limits-st-louis-police-conduct-during-protests-idUSKBN1DG091

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