Brown’s killing touched off large public demonstrations, beginning the evening of August 10 and continuing mostly unabated for two weeks. Human Rights Watch found serious problems in the police response to the protests. The problems included the intimidation of protesters that infringed upon their rights to assembly and freedom of expression, which are protected under both the US Constitution and international law. At times, the police used unnecessary and disproportionate force. The authorities also hindered media organizations from gathering news on the protests.

  • United States
    Thanks to the US Department of Justice, we’ve learned a lot about how authorities in Ferguson, Missouri have been using their police force and municipal court to bleed money from the poor to fill the city’s coffers.
    Dispatches: Ferguson is Not Unique
  • United States
    “They think they’re above the law,” replied 53-year-old Diane, who was out marching on West Florissant Avenue in Ferguson, Missouri last Monday afternoon, when I asked her about police-community relations. “The people fear the police because when they’re supposed to help you, they attack you.”
  • United States
    (Ferguson) – US Attorney General Eric Holder should press state and local officials during his visit to Ferguson, Missouri, on August 20, 2014, to reform police practices to improve respect for basic rights, Human Rights Watch said today. Holder should also support federal reforms that could help address concerns about policing and racial discrimination raised during the Ferguson protests over the last 10 days.
    US: Holder Should Press for Police Reform