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Protests erupt after St. Louis police shoot, kill 18-year-old after home search

ST. LOUIS — A black 18-year-old fleeing from officers serving a search warrant at a home in a crime-troubled section of St. Louis was shot and killed Wednesday by police after he pointed a gun at them, the city's police chief said.

The shooting drew protests, with many of the roughly 150 people who gathered at the scene later Wednesday hurling obscene gestures and expletives at investigators and questioning police use of deadly force. Some chanted "Black Lives Matter," a mantra used a year ago after the fatal police shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown in nearby Ferguson.

Police Chief Sam Dotson said at a news conference late Wednesday night that nine people were arrested and officers used tear gas to clear a street. He said protesters who were blocking a street also threw glass bottles and bricks at officers.

Dotson said protesters ignored requests to clear the road and inert smoke was deployed. He said that had no effect, so police then used tear gas after giving warnings over a loudspeaker.

A car was set on fire nearby and police were responding to reports of burglaries in the area, he said.

Dotson said two suspects fled from the home about noon Wednesday on the city's north side before the 18-year-old turned and pointed a handgun at the officers, who shot him. That suspect, identified later by police as Mansur Ball-Bey of St. Louis, died at the scene. Police are searching for the second suspect, who they said is thought to be in his mid to late teens.

Both officers, who are white, were unharmed, according to a police report.

Dotson said four guns, including the handgun wielded by the dead suspect, and crack cocaine were recovered at or near the home, which last year yielded illegal guns during a police search. A man and woman who were also inside the home were arrested, Dotson said.

Police obtained the search warrant because they thought the home harbored suspects in other crimes, Dotson said. He didn't specify the crimes, but he noted there was a killing on the same street Monday and a nearby market just was riddled by bullets.

That area also is near where a 93-year-old veteran who was part of the Tuskegee Airmen — black World War II pilots — was the victim of crimes twice within a few minutes Sunday, being robbed and then having his car stolen. The veteran was unhurt, and his car was found Tuesday blocks from where it was taken.