US police kill suspect near Ferguson

St Louis - Police in the US city of St Louis shot dead another suspect on Tuesday, a short distance from a suburb that is the scene of protests over the killing of an unarmed black teenager.

The suspect was a 23-year-old African American man. Sky News reports that the man walked out of a convenience store with two energy drinks in hand, and apparently had not paid for them.

He walked erratically up and down the street, where various business owners proceeded to phone the police when they saw that he had a knife in his hand.

St Louis Police Chief Sam Dotson said in a tweet that officers had responded to a call and found an apparently agitated man, armed with a knife who yelled "kill me now" and approached the patrol.

In a tweet from his own account retweeted by his force, Dotson said: "Officers gave suspect verbal commands. Officers feared for their safety and both officers fired their weapons. Suspect is deceased."

Fox News meanwhile reports that US Attorney General Eric Holder is heading to Ferguson to take the lead in the federal government’s response to the escalating tension.

Holder, who is expected in St Louis on Wednesday, is said to be committing what is being described as an “extraordinary” effort to investigate the case.

President Barack Obama has called for calm on both sides, urging protesters to stay peaceful and police to show restraint.

The world's media descended on the street where the latest police shooting took place, dozens of reporters having been in the nearby St Louis suburb of Ferguson covering the ongoing unrest.

Onlookers gathered at the yellow incident tape sealing off the scene of Tuesday's shooting outside a convenience store in St Louis, some of them chanting the slogan of the protests: "Hands up, don't shoot".

Captain Ed Kuntz told reporters at the scene that an investigation had been launched, but, based on what he had heard, "it seems reasonable to say it was justifiable".

"Whenever there's a police shooting, tensions are always more high," he admitted, while insisting: "Right now we are focused on preserving life and protecting property."

On 9 August, a white officer in Ferguson shot and killed an 18-year-old unarmed black student, triggering more than a week of sometimes violent protests against heavy-handed police tactics.

Read more on: us
Michael Kelynack 2014-08-19 10:14:42 PM
Good for the cops. If you attack or threaten the cops, then you should be shot. Doesnt matter where in the world it is.
Johanna Vos 2014-08-19 10:45:33 PM
What they don't say is that he was a suspect in a robbery...
Jason Strauss 2014-08-19 11:01:12 PM
That tactic were you act crazy doesn't work with me either.
Michael Ndalama Mwale 2014-08-19 11:09:45 PM
I just hope and pray that this does not turn into a US version of the Marikana Massacre.
Rice Safari 2014-08-19 11:25:26 PM
"The suspect turned toward officers, pulled out knife in an overhand grip, told officers to 'shoot me now, kill me now,'" said St Louis Police Chief Sam Dotson. Sounds like the suspect wanted to be the US version of a martyr.
Rice Safari 2014-08-19 11:25:26 PM
"The suspect turned toward officers, pulled out knife in an overhand grip, told officers to 'shoot me now, kill me now,'" said St Louis Police Chief Sam Dotson. Sounds like the suspect wanted to be the US version of a martyr.
Helen Sanya 2014-08-20 12:02:16 AM
American police shoots first, then asks questions. They too trigger happy! Shameful time for the American police right now, just killing young people unnecessarily.
Lungisa Mangi Dlamini 2014-08-20 12:04:40 AM
they could have short him in the leg. Not kill him. He was not carring a fire arm for pitt's sake. I sure that these policeman are well trained. This is irresponsibly. Its murder. Im sure if he was white they would have fire just warning shots. Black people are no valued all over the world.
Mouteng Wilfred Moraba 2014-08-20 12:14:56 AM
We shall see
Morne Roets 2014-08-20 01:05:15 AM
Why is this even a headline here? What does it have to do with us? Well if you can't answer that then you are part of the 99.999% of the world which doesn't know why. Unfortunately for you are now being guided and being emotionally whipped up, and at the right moment you will be like putty in the hands of your masters. So sad!