Mourners gather for funeral of US teenager Michael Brown

Hundreds of people are gathering for the funeral of Michael Brown, the unarmed American teenager who was shot dead by police on 9th August.

Speaking ahead of the ceremony, the teen's father called for calm, saying: "We need a moment of silence on our son. We need peace on his going-away."

Three White House officials will attend the service.

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Ferguson officers 'did not reciprocate heavy fire'

Captain Ron Johnson of the Missouri State Highway Patrol answers media questions Credit: Reuters

State Highway Patrol Captain Ron Johnson, placed in command of security in Ferguson last week after local police tactics that were criticised as overly harsh, said officers had come under "heavy gunfire" on Monday night but did not return it.

The predominantly African-American community of 21,000 people has been gripped by street protests punctuated by looting and clashes with police every night since the unarmed, 18-year-old Michael Brown was killed by a white police officer.

"Our innocent people need for a moment to go into their homes and not allow this criminal element to hide behind them," Johnson told reporters.

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