Protests continue in Louisiana after police shooting of black man caught on camera


Hundreds of mourners and protesters gathered on Wednesday night outside a shop in Louisiana where the killing of a black man by police was caught on camera.

Alton Sterling, 37, was shot on Tuesday as he wrestled with two white Baton Rouge police officers outside the Triple S convenience store where he sold CDs for a living. Police say he was armed.

The shooting was filmed and circulated on social media by anti-violence activist group Stop the Killing Inc, who were monitoring police scanners when they heard a report of a disturbance at the store.

The video shows the officers pinning Sterling down before the shots are fired. The camera moves away at one point and when it returns, Sterling can be seen lying on the ground with what appears to be blood on his chest.

It was not clear from the footage whether Sterling had a gun in his hand or was reaching for it when he was shot, but a witness said he saw police pull a gun from Sterling's pocket after the shooting.

A second video of the killing, taken by the store's owner Abdullah Muflahi, emerged later.

people raise their fists in the air as they set off balloons (Gerald Herbert/AP)

The peaceful vigil following the shooting involved prayers, songs, a balloon release in memory of Sterling and calls for justice. Many of those gathered held signs demanding action as participants chanted "Black Lives Matter".

Some of the protesters' signs read No Justice, No Peace, Black Out Downtown and Who Is Supposed To Protect Us?"

People hold hands and raise them up in the air at a vigil (Gerald Herbert/AP)

Democratic Louisiana governor John Bel Edwards said at a conference: "I have very serious concerns. The video is disturbing, to say the least."

The US Justice Department has launched a civil rights investigation into the killing.