Gun sales in Ferguson, Mo., have increased as the city braces for the grand jury’s decision on whether to charge Darren Wilson, the white officer who shot and killed Michael Brown on August 9.
The St. Louis County police have spent $100,000 to buy riot gear and other items in case possible protests turn violent if prosecutors announce whether a Ferguson officer will face criminal charges in the fatal shooting of Michael Brown.
Ever since the protests started in august, the county has spent $65,500 for new riot gear, such as helmets, shields and batons and another $35,000 to replenish the supply of items including pepper spray, smoke canisters and rubber bullets,” said St. Louis County Police spokesman Brian Schellman.
CNN also reported that gun sales are up in St. Louis, which indicates people are buying guns ahead of possible violent protests.
A state grand jury has been in the process ever since 18-year-old Brown was shot and killed by white Officer Darren Wilson on Aug. 9.
St. Louis County prosecutor Bob McCulloch has said the grand jury decision is expected to be made in mid- to late November, but no earlier than Saturday.
It is believed that if the grand jury decides not to charge Wilson, people will be enraged and stage more protests, as they have continued to so during the last three months.
Businesses, schools and government offices have also been preparing for the announcement while fearing violent protests. Many schools have urged the prosecutors to make the announcement on a weekend when classes are not in session.
“We’ve reached out to parents, first and foremost, to reassure them that student safety will always be our top priority,” said Jana Shortt, spokeswoman for the 11,300-student Ferguson-Florissant School District. She declined to offer specifics.