ST. LOUIS — A St. Louis County man has been indicted by a federal grand jury for allegedly trying to set fire to the Ferguson Market on the night of the announcement that police officer Darren Wilson would not face charges in the killing of Michael Brown.
The indictment of Antonio Whiteside, 26, was announced Friday. He is charged with attempt to damage and destroy by means of fire and/or explosive materials. He was taken into custody Thursday night and does not yet have an attorney.
U.S. Attorney Richard Callahan said the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the St. Louis County Bomb and Arson Unit have been working together since the rioting on Nov. 24.
"This indictment is but one result of that collaboration, which is an ongoing effort and I expect will produce additional indictments at both the state and federal level," Callahan said in a statement.
Brown, 18, was unarmed when he was fatally shot by Wilson during a confrontation on Aug. 9. Wilson, a Ferguson officer, told the grand jury that he shot Brown out of fear for his life, but some witnesses said Brown was trying to surrender.
The shooting raised new concerns about the often tense relationship between police and minority residents, and led to protests and violence.
Violence was renewed Nov. 24 after St. Louis County prosecutor Bob McCulloch announced that Wilson would face no state charges. A federal investigation is ongoing.
The blaze at Ferguson Market was put out quickly, but more than a dozen businesses in Ferguson and neighboring Dellwood were destroyed in fires in the aftermath of the grand jury decision.
Tracking down those responsible for the fires and looting has been difficult. St. Louis County police have released surveillance video of several instances of looting, seeking tips from the public.
St. Louis County police spokesman Brian Schellman said Whiteside's arrest was the first related to arson stemming from the grand jury announcement.