One year later and what a year it’s been.
I’m talking about Ferguson and the death of Michael Brown.
All weekend long there had been hundreds of marchers out on the streets, peacefully and respectfully marking Brown’s death.
And then, on Sunday, as it sadly, often does in these demonstrations, something went terribly wrong.
A fool with a gun started shooting and all hell broke loose.
It happened three separate times, according to police and witnesses on the scene.
CNN reporter Sara Sidner and other reporters were in the middle of interviewing the interim police chief when gunshots rang out.
Gunshots captured on camera in Ferguson
CNN captures the sound of gunshots in Ferguson, Missouri during an interview with the city’s interim police chief. CNN’s Sara Sidner reports.
“We just want to be as calm as possible.. (gunshots) live gunfire… cover.. cover.. “
The acting chief Andre Anderson was in the middle of telling reporters his department’s plans for keeping the peace.
Protesters, residents and members of the media scrambled for cover.
Police say when they encountered the suspected gunman he was running away after exchanging gunfire with an unknown person.
Police say detectives in an unmarked SUV turned on their emergency lights and went after the suspect, 18-year-old Tyrone Harris who allegedly unleashed a quote “remarkable amount of gunfire” on officers.
His aunt says her nephew did not fire on officers and did not own a gun.
But police say Harris used a stolen gun to shoot at police.
Local reports show a Facebook page with Harris brandishing weapons.
He’s in critical condition charged with four counts of first-degree assault on law enforcement, five counts of armed criminal action and one count of discharging a firearm at a motor vehicle.
Innocent until proven guilty, but it only takes one – one person to ruin the progress that Ferguson has been making over the last year.
It only takes one person to send the wrong message about protesters to the world and they usually do it under the cover of darkness.
Having spent time in Ferguson and witnessing several riots, I think protesters should seek to separate themselves from the criminal element by not holding demonstrations at night anymore.
What protesters did yesterday was brilliant.
They held an organized, civilized act of disobedience in broad daylight in front of the courthouse.
Their message was not overshadowed by those who only seek to disrupt without a solution.
The movement is growing up.