Photo Essay

  • Supporters of Michael Brown, who was killed by a police officer on August 9, raise their hands in solidarity as they are led by Tracy Martin, father of Trayvon Martin, a Florida teenager shot dead in 2012, at the the Peace Fest 2014 rally in St. Louis, Mo., Aug. 24, 2014.
  • Tracy Martin (C), the father of Trayvon Martin, attends Peace Fest in Forest Park on Aug. 24, 2014 in St. Louis, Mo.
  • Lesley McSpadden (2nd L) and Michael Brown Sr. (C), parents of 18-year-old Michael Brown, raise their hands with Reverend Al Sharpton as attorney Benjamin Crump (2nd R) leads the slogan, “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot,” while attending the Peace Fest 2014 rally in St. Louis, Mo., Aug. 24, 2014.
  • Local resident Vawone Duncan (R) leans on his father Ducan Yawan after police made arrests as demonstrators gathered to protest the death of unarmed teen Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., on Aug. 24, 2014. Demonstrators in Ferguson on Saturday marked two weeks since a white policeman shot an unarmed black teenager to death, holding smaller, quieter protests as supporters of the officer rallied separately and called the shooting justified. The demonstrations remained peaceful as darkness fell, marking the fourth night of relative calm for the St. Louis suburb following nightly spasms of unrest since Michael Brown, 18, was shot by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson on Aug. 9.
  • Demonstrators protest the shooting death of Michael Brown on Aug. 23, 2014 in Ferguson, Mo.
  • Tammy Trosclair signs a message board which was placed along West Florissant Avenue in the aftermath of Michael Brown’s death, on Aug. 23, 2014 in Ferguson, Mo.
  • Roses are seen in a memorial setup for Michael Brown on the spot where his body lay after he was shot by police, on Aug. 22, 2014 in Ferguson, Mo.
  • Edward Jones kneels in the road as he and other demonstrators protesting the shooting death of Michael Brown march through the streets on Aug. 22, 2014 in Ferguson, Mo.
  • Demonstrators protest the death of Michael Brown on Aug. 22, 2014 in Ferguson, Mo.
  • Missouri State Highway Patrol Capt. Ron Johnson greets demonstrators protesting the shooting of Michael Brown on Aug. 22, 2014 in Ferguson, Mo.
  • Demonstrators protest the shooting of Michael Brown on Aug. 22, 2014 in Ferguson, Mo.
  • A demonstrator protesting the shooting of Michael Brown waves the American flag on Aug. 21, 2014 in Ferguson, Mo.
  • National Guard members watch from a small hilltop a couple blocks away as demonstrators protest the shooting death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo, Aug. 21, 2014.
  • Protesters march on Aug. 21, 2014, in Ferguson, Mo.
  • Demonstrators protest the death of Michael Brown on Aug. 21, 2014 in Ferguson, Mo.
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A turning point for Ferguson

Updated
By msnbc staff

FERGUSON, Missouri –  Missouri Highway Patrol Capt. Ron Johnson declared the protests that went into the wee hours Thursday “a very good night in Ferguson,” marking a turning point in what would become a string of relatively peaceful nights.

Attorney General Eric Holder, after returning from the St. Louis suburb, said in a press conference that “this Department of Justice stands with the people of Ferguson.” Meanwhile, African-American leaders in Missouri called for the resignation of Ferguson Mayor James Knowles, and protesters continued to demand authorities fire Darren Wilson, the officer who killed Michael Brown. Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon ordered the National Guard to begin withdrawing from Ferguson, where they had been in place for a couple days. 

The NAACP organized a march, which took place on Saturday, hoping to channel outrage into political action in the community. On Sunday, Michael Brown’s parents, along with families of Trayvon Martin and Oscar Grant, came together for “Peace Fest 2014” in Forest Park in St. Louis, an event hosted by The Trayvon Martin Foundation and Better Family Life. The Brown family called for a day of peace and calm ahead of the funeral for their son. 

“Tomorrow, all I want is peace while my son is being laid to rest,” Michael Brown Sr. said Sunday at the rally. “Please, please take a day of silence so we can lay our son to rest. Please. That’s all I ask. And thank you.”

Hundreds of people attended the rally, which sought to bring attention to the shootings of young African-American men.

Thousands of dollars have been raised for the officer who fatally shot unarmed teen Michael Brown through a crowdfunding website created at the beginning of the week.

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