Missouri officials say they have sketched out "rules of engagement" for demonstrations that are likely to follow a grand-jury decision in the Ferguson case. "The fact that we can sit around the table and have a conversation ... is why I have confidence we will come through this better and not worse," St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley said at a Friday news conference, stressing that the talks were not "negotiations."
St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay said authorities met with protest leaders five times, as recently as Friday morning. He said they agreed to most of the proposed rules because they "made sense" but rejected others because they would have inhibited officers' ability to protect people and property. Missouri Public Safety Director Dan Isom said that officers would not get "aggressive" as long as demonstrators were non-violent. "Police tactics will not change based on the words protesters use," Isom said.
A grand jury is still weighing whether the Ferguson police officer who shot unarmed teenager Michael Brown, Darren Wilson, will be charged, and a decision could come down any day.
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