Social media threats delay release of shooter's name in fatal Mo. shooting

Social media threats delay release of shooter's name in fatal Mo. shooting

Social media threats delay release of shooter's name in fatal Mo. shooting

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by Yamiche Alcindor, Brandie Piper and John Bacon, USA TODAY

WHAS11.com

Posted on August 12, 2014 at 11:23 AM

Updated Tuesday, Aug 12 at 3:27 PM

FERGUSON, Mo. — Authorities on Tuesday delayed revealing the identity of the police officer who fatally shot an unarmed teen three days ago, citing threats against the officer on social media.

"If we come out and say, 'it was this officer,' then he immediately becomes a target," Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson said. "We're taking the threats seriously."

Jackson, who had said he would reveal the officer's name at a morning press conference, said there is now no timetable.

Witnesses say Michael Brown, 18, had raised his hands to surrender when the shots were fired. Police have not confirmed that information. The shooting set off two nights of angry, violent protests.

Jackson said protesters Monday night threw rocks at police, and that gunfire came from the crowd, so officers used tear gas and shot "beanbag rounds" meant to stun them. There were 15 arrests but no reports of the looting that rocked the suburban St. Louis city Sunday night, KSDK-TV reported.

"This is a lot of young people reacting to getting shot at with tear gas, being met with riot gear," said protester Shawn Jordan. "How else are these young kids going to react when they are being met with aggressiveness?"

Earlier Monday, the NAACP sponsored a community forum that drew hundreds of people. National NAACP President Cornell William Brooks demanded justice while condemning the violence and looting.

"Martin Luther King did not live and die that we might steal and lie in the name of justice in the middle of the night," said Cornell. "He lived and died that we might seek justice in the middle of the day."

Demands for answers in Ferguson have been steadily growing louder.

The FBI opened an investigation Monday into the death of Brown, who police said was shot multiple times Saturday after being confronted by an officer in Ferguson, a city of 21,000 that's nearly 70% black. 

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