U2 has announced the cancellation of their scheduled concert this weekend in St. Louis. The cancellation comes hot on the heels of increasing violence following protests that swiftly turned into riots. The protests were initially a reaction to the acquittal of a police officer charged with first-degree murder, an incident that culminated in the fatal shooting of an African-American man. The St. Louis Metropolitan Police Chief has announced that "standard protection" and basic city services for the audience couldn't be guaranteed.
The protests have resulted in 10 officers injured so far. Twenty-three arrests were made shortly after Circuit Judge Timothy Wilson ruled that Officer Jason Stockley was not guilty of first-degree murder and armed criminal action in the jury-free bench trial.
"We have been informed by the St. Louis Police Department that they are not in a position to provide the standard protection for our audience as would be expected for an event of this size," the band said in a joint statement with tour promoter Live Nation published on U2's website.
"We have also been informed that local crowd security personnel would not be at full capacity. In light of this information, we cannot in good conscience risk our fans' safety by proceeding with tonight's concert. As much as we regret having to cancel, we feel it is the only acceptable course of action in the current environment."