News ID: 125675
Published: 0925 GMT August 29, 2015

Americans holding funeral for black teenager killed by police

Americans holding funeral for black teenager killed by police

A large number of people are gathering for the funeral of an African-American teenager who was shot by a white police officer earlier this month in St. Louis, Missouri.

The funeral for Mansur Ball-Bey was being held on Saturday, 10 days after the 18-year-old was fatally shot in the back by the officer.

His death sparked angry protests last week, recalling the racial tensions fueled by the killing of Michael Brown in nearby Ferguson a year ago.

The shooting came 10 days after the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson was flooded with protesters marking the first anniversary of the August 9 fatal shooting of 18-year-old Brown by a white police officer.

Brown's death triggered months of violent protests across the United States and spurred a nationwide movement to confront police violence against minorities.

According to St. Louis Police Chief Sam Dotson, Ball-Bey’s fatal shooting took place as police were conducting a search warrant and two young African-American men ran out the back door of the targeted home.

Officers ordered the two men to stop in the alley behind the house. One suspect pointed a gun at officers who then fired four times, killing him, Dotson said.

The police obtained the search warrant because they believed the house contained several suspects.

However, activists and residents are skeptical about the police chief's account that the suspect pointed a gun at police before being killed.

An autopsy shows that Ball-Bey died from a wound in the back, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported last week, citing St. Louis police chief Sam Dotson.

A report released earlier this month has indicated that US police officers killed 118 people last month across the country, making July the deadliest month of this year so far.

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