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MHP Captain Ron Johnson takes charge in Ferguson: “I got a big dog in this fight”

ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI) – There has been a change in command and a former North St. Louis County resident is now leading the policing in Ferguson.

Captain Ron Johnson of the Missouri Highway Patrol said he’s from North County and doesn’t plan on leaving anytime soon.  Around 5 p.m. Thursday, Johnson lead demonstrators as they marched to the now infamous QuikTrip that was torched late Sunday night by vandals.

With the eyes of the world watching, Missouri Governor Jay Nixon called for a change in how police are operating in the wake of the fatal shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson.

In recent nights the police have tried to clear protestors using armored cars and officers dressed in military gear.

Screenshot_12Johnson’s is expected to help lower the intensity of direct interactions with the public.  Captain Ron Johnson is a graduate of a high school near Ferguson.
In recent nights the police have tried to clear protestors using armored cars and officers dressed in military gear.

 

Johnson said he has informed his officers not to wear gas masks as a start to earning the community’s trust.

“We’re gonna start from today,”  said Capt. Johnson.   “We’re not gonna look back in the past  when we talk about boots on the ground… my boots will be on the ground  and actually I plan on tonight myself walking  to QuikTrip that has been called ground zero and meeting with the folks there myself tonight.  And so we are gonna have a different approach and have the approach that we’re in this together.”

This morning, Governor Nixon joined members of the St. Louis Clergy Coalition and other civic leaders to talk and pray about the crisis in Ferguson.