- Associated Press - Tuesday, June 23, 2015

FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) - A group seeking the ouster of Ferguson’s mayor has submitted a new batch of petitions seeking a recall election in the wake of last summer’s police shooting death of Michael Brown.

Ground Level Support’s push to recall James Knowles III fell short earlier this month when the group failed to turn in enough valid signatures. A review by the St. Louis County Board of Election Commissioners found that the petitions submitted May 28 fell more than 800 authentic signatures short of the 1,814 needed.

The new petitions, with additional signatures the group hopes will exceed the 1,814 needed, still must be vetted by the county’s election board. That could be decided within days.

Knowles, who is white and has said he has no plans to step down, was criticized for comments he made following last August’s shooting death of Brown - a black, unarmed 18-year-old - by white police officer Darren Wilson, including a denial that the largely black St. Louis suburb of 21,000 residents was racially divided.

A county grand jury and the U.S. Justice Department cleared Wilson, who later resigned. But a Justice Department report criticized the police and municipal court for raising money by ticketing the poor. The report led to the departure of five city employees.

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