Two blocks from West Florissant Avenue, where several buildings were burning and a crush of police were standing guard, the memorial for Michael Brown was eerily quiet.
One car pulled to a stop around 11:40 p.m. Monday, hours after a grand jury declined to indict the police officer who shot Brown after an altercation. And two young black men exited to pray at the memorial, a line of flowers and stuffed animals lining the place where Brown fell.
One, who would identify himself only as a friend of Brown's and a resident of the Canfield Green apartment complex near where he died, said it was more important to pay respects to the teen than to
be out where the fires were burning.
"He was my homeboy ... a young man who didn't deserve to die," he said speaking over a chorus of car horns from the distance.
He said he was infuriated by the grand jury decision.
"If a black cop killed a white boy he'd be in jail," the man said.
"People need to start thinking 'What if this was my child?'"