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31 arrested as racial unrest in Missouri rages on
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c_330_235_16777215_0___images_stories_edim_Missouri99.jpgU.S. police said early on Tuesday they arrested 31 people, including a journalist, during another night of racially charged protests in Ferguson, Missouri, sparked by the fatal shooting of an unarmed black teenager by a white policeman 10 days ago.
 
Police and protesters collided in the streets of Ferguson again late Monday, a day after the Missouri governor summoned the National Guard to help restore calm to the St. Louis suburb, AP reported.  
 
Protesters filled the streets after nightfall, and officers used bullhorns to order them to disperse. Police deployed noisemakers and armored vehicles to push demonstrators back. During one confrontation, officers fired tear gas and flash grenades. There were no reports of serious injuries.
 
After the streets had been mostly cleared, authorities ordered reporters to leave as well, citing the risk from gunfire that had been reported.
 
State Highway Patrol Captain Ron Johnson, briefing reporters on Monday's night's violence, said "our officers came under heavy gunfire" in one area.
 
Johnson separately told CNN that two people were shot within the crowd, but not by police, and were taken to hospital. There was no immediate word on their condition.
 
Demonstrations have flared since Brown, 18, was shot dead while walking down a residential street on August 9.
 
The violence has captured headlines around the world, raising questions about the state of U.S. race relations nearly six years after Americans elected their first black president.
 
An overnight curfew has been imposed and the National Guard, the U.S. state militia, has been deployed in the St. Louis suburb of 21,000 people to stop looting and burning that have punctuated the protests.
 
There have been protests over Brown's killing elsewhere in the United States including in St. Louis, New York, Seattle and Oakland. Police commander Johnson said some of those arrested had come from California and New York.
 
Missouri Governor Jay Nixon declared a state of emergency in Ferguson on Saturday and a curfew from midnight to 5 a.m. He also mobilized the National Guard to back up state police.
 
‘Small minority is undermining justice’
 
In Washington, President Barack Obama said the vast majority of protesters in Ferguson were peaceful, but warned that a small minority was undermining justice.
 
During a brief pause in his summer vacation, Obama said overcoming the mistrust endemic between many communities and their local police would require Americans to "listen and not just shout."
 
The president also weighed in for the first time publicly on the militarization of some local police departments, saying it would probably be useful to examine how federal grant dollars had been used to allow local police to purchase military-style equipment.
 
Attorney General Eric Holder was scheduled to travel to Ferguson later this week to meet with FBI and other officials carrying out an independent federal investigation into Brown's death.
 
The St. Louis County medical examiner's autopsy found that Brown was shot six to eight times in the head and chest, office administrator Suzanne McCune said Monday. But she declined further comment, saying the full findings were not expected for about two weeks.
 
Family attorney Benjamin Crump said Brown's parents wanted the additional autopsy because they feared results of the county's examination could be biased. Crump declined to release copies of the report.
 

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