Four officers shot in St. Louis amid night of violent protests

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ST. LOUIS (KTVI) — Four officers were hit by gunfire after protests in St. Louis that started peacefully Monday became violent overnight, with demonstrators smashing windows and stealing items from businesses and fires burning in the downtown area.

The police department tweeted early Tuesday that the officers were taken to a hospital with injuries that were not believed to be life-threatening. It was unclear who had fired the shots.

Police Chief John Hayden said two officers were shot in the leg, one in the foot and one in the arm.

The chaos in St. Louis followed continued protests Monday in Missouri over the death of George Floyd and the police treatment of African Americans, with gatherings also held in Kansas City and Jefferson City.

On Monday afternoon, several hundred people rallied peacefully outside the justice center in downtown St. Louis, including Mayor Lyda Krewson and St. Louis Public Safety Director Jimmie Edwards. Protestors later walked to the Gateway Arch National Park and then onto nearby Interstate 64.

But later Monday, protesters gathered in front of police headquarters, where officers fired tear gas. Some protesters smashed windows at a downtown 7-11 convenience store and stole items from inside before the building was set on fire.

Department sources told KTVI that the shooting happened in the Olive Street corridor, not far from the Metropolitan Police Department headquarters.

St. Louis police crews on scene in the Olive corridor have been augmented by Missouri State Highway Patrol and other law enforcement assets.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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