ST. LOUIS COUNTY - Days after protesters and police clashed inside the Saint Louis Galleria Mall, the debate continues over what really happened. Now some lawmakers are calling for an independent investigation.
State Representative Stacey Newman (D-St. Louis County), sent a letter to the St. Louis County Council Tuesday on behalf of nearly clergy members and lawmakers - including U.S. Representative Lacy Clay (D-St. Louis) - calling for an independent investigation overseen by an unnamed retired St. Louis Circuit Court judge.
Related: 22 arrested in march around Galleria
More than two dozen people spoke before the council Tuesday night questioning police tactics and blaming officers for the chaos inside the Galleria Saturday when 22 protesters were arrested.
Protesters say police overreacted and didn't clearly announce warnings to disperse. Police say the least amount of force possible was used and that protester tossed a trash can at an officer.
"None of this makes any sense to us," said Newman. "We need to have this investigation so we get the answer."
Newman and the group signing the letter are also calling on the county to request the Department of Justice launch an investigation.
In a statement, St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar said, in part, "Any use of force that occurred at the Galleria Mall on Saturday, September 23, 2017, has been documented and will be reviewed as is the practice and policy of this department."
Belmar's statement also read, "False narratives should not be purported without facts and is not helpful."
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