Several people protesting against the Ferguson grand jury decision stormed into City Hall in St. Louis on Wednesday, leading police to lock down the building and to call in more than a hundred additional officers.
At least two people were arrested after the incident, in which the protesters shouted "Shame, shame" while rushing into the building.
Those who made it inside City Hall were part of a group of about 300 protesters who marched and held a mock trial of Darren Wilson, the Ferguson police officer who shot and killed 18-year-old Michael Brown during an Aug. 9 confrontation in the St. Louis suburb.
An influx of National Guardsmen helped make the second night of protests after the grand jury's decision not to indict Wilson much calmer than the first, when 12 commercial buildings were burned down and several others were set ablaze. There were 58 arrests overnight at area protests, including 45 in Ferguson and 13 in St. Louis.
As the tension in Ferguson eased somewhat, Officer Darren Wilson says he "never wanted to take anybody's life" and feels sorry about the death of Michael Brown, though he said he was only following his training when he shot the teenager.
Map of clashes and looting in Ferguson on Nov. 25
NATIONAL GUARD: FERGUSON POLICE DEPARTMENT PROTECTED
The toll from Monday's protests – 12 commercial buildings burned to the ground, plus eight other blazes and a dozen vehicles torched – prompted Missouri governor Jay Nixon to send a large contingent of extra National Guard troops.
The governor ordered the initial force of 700 to be increased to 2,200 in hopes that their presence would help local law enforcement keep order in the St. Louis suburb. "Lives and property must be protected," Nixon said. "This community deserves to have peace."
Guard units protected the Ferguson Police Department and left crowd control, arrests and use of tear gas to local officers. In one commercial area Wednesday morning, a soldier was stationed at every few storefronts, and some were on rooftops.
Protesters threw rocks, tent poles, and bottles – some containing urine – at officers. As the crowd dispersed early Wednesday, some threw rocks through the windows of a muffler shop and a used-car dealership near a painted mural that read "Peace for Ferguson."
DARREN WILSON: 'I KNOW I DID MY JOB RIGHT'
Wilson says in an interview with ABC's Good Morning America that aired Wednesday that he followed his training when he shot the unarmed black teenager. During their confrontation, he says, "The only emotion I ever felt was fear and then it was survival and training."
Wilson says he only fired at Brown when Brown was facing him, and never when his back was turned. And he says he saw in the teenager a high level of aggression and anger that was "almost unfathomable." But Wilson said he understands Wilson's parents' anger because they are grieving their son. He says, "I'm sorry that their son lost his life."
During an interview with ABC News the night before, Wilson said he has a clean conscience because "I know I did my job right."
Wilson, 28, had been with the Ferguson police force for less than three years before the Aug. 9 shooting. He told ABC that Brown's shooting was the first time he fired his gun on the job. Asked whether the encounter would have unfolded the same way if Brown had been white, Wilson said yes.
Wilson's lawyers issued a statement praising the decision and saying the officer is grateful to his supporters. "Law enforcement personnel must frequently make split-second and difficult decisions," the lawyers wrote. Wilson "followed his training and followed the law."
BROWN FAMILY: GRAND JURY DECISION 'HEARTBREAKING'
Brown's mother, Lesley McSpadden, says it has been a "sleepless, very hard, heartbreaking and unbelievable" time for her since the announcement that a grand jury didn't indict Ferguson police Officer Darren Wilson for killing her son.
McSpadden said during an interview on NBC's Today show Wednesday that she also felt that Wilson's description of her son as looking demonic during their confrontation was disrespectful and "added insult to injury."
McSpadden said she hadn't seen video of her husband, Brown's stepfather Louis Head, yelling "Burn this bitch down" to angry protesters after the grand jury decision was announced Monday night. She says the crowd "was already stirred" and that she holds the authorities, not her husband, for the protests.
WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?
Federal charges: The Brown family attorneys said they hope an ongoing federal civil rights investigation leads to charges. But federal investigations of police misconduct face a steep legal standard, requiring proof that an officer willfully violated a victim's civil rights. Testimony from Wilson that he felt threatened, and physical evidence almost certainly complicates any efforts to seek federal charges. Under federal law, "you have to prove as a prosecutor that the officer knew at the moment that he pulled the trigger that he was using too much force, that he was violating the Constitution," said Seth Rosenthal, a former Justice Department civil rights prosecutor.
Justice Department probe: The Justice Department has also launched a broad probe into the Ferguson Police Department, looking for patterns of discrimination. Attorney-General Eric Holder said the department aims to complete those investigations as quickly as possible "to restore trust, to rebuild understanding and to foster co-operation between law enforcement and community members."
Litigation: Regardless of the outcome of the federal investigations, Brown's family also could file a wrongful-death lawsuit against Wilson.