St. Louis, Missouri – A panel discussion Oct. 11 about policing and racial equity put on by Democrats in the city broke out in violence and angry attendants shouting down the panelists.
St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson, State Rep. Bruce Franks Jr. and St. Louis Police Sgt. Heather Taylor were on the panel that was called after former police Officer Jason Stockley was acquitted for shooting and killing drug dealer Anthony Lamar Smith, according to the St. Louis Post –Dispatch.
The newspaper said that angry residents shouted down the mayor throughout the event. The newspaper wrote that one man shouted “How long do we have to wait?” repeatedly as the mayor tried to respond to questions.
St. Louis Alderman Christine Ingrassia posted on Twitter that her children saw a man get punched next to them because he asked to hear what the mayor was saying.
“Not the message I thought they’d take away tonight,” Ingrassia tweeted.
Many of the mayor’s answers were drowned out by people yelling for the resignation of Interim Police Chief Lawrence O’Toole.
Sgt. Taylor, who has been outspoken protester of Officer Stockley, called his not-guilty verdict “ridiculous” and Stockley’s actions “irresponsible,” the newspaper reported.
Sgt. Taylor did not address in the Post-Dispatch story the newspaper’s report that some of the key evidence presented to the grand jury that charged Stockley was either false or misleading.
In September, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that the lead internal affairs investigator made several misstatements to the grand jury that were key in the case moving forward against Officer Stockley.
Internal Affairs investigator Kirk Deeken gave misleading or inaccurate information to the grand jury about a fifth “kill shot” that was later determined there was no evidence of that fifth shot.
Also then Circuit Attorney Jennifer Joyce claimed she filed charges five years after the shooting after “new evidence” was presented to her office.
Joyce’s office as well as federal prosecutors had refused to charge Officer Stockley previously.
However, Investigator Deeken testified he knew of no new evidence presented to Joyce and Joyce’s successor Kim Gardner could not say what the new evidence was. Joyce never revealed it.