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Driver 'was fleeing from mob' when he hit Ferguson protester with car in Minneapolis

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Police say the man who hit a teenager with his car while driving through a Ferguson protest in south Minneapolis Tuesday was "fleeing from the mob," according to the Star Tribune.

The incident occurred during a protest outside the 3rd Police Precinct on East Lake Street and Minnehaha Tuesday evening. A 16-year-old suffered minor injuries after being hit by the Subaru station wagon.

A video taken by KSTP appears to show several people had climbed onto the car immediately prior to it hitting the woman, and attacked the car in the aftermath.

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A report released by police initially described the driver as the victim, saying: "The victim's vehicle was damaged by a large group of people. While [the driver] was attempting to flee from the mob, he struck a pedestrian. State accident report filed."

But late Wednesday afternoon, they had changed their description of the driver to a "suspect", with no explanation for the change given, the Star Tribune says.

The man was questioned moments after the incident and remains under investigation, but at this stage he has not been arrested or charged.

Footage of the collision made it onto international coverage of the Ferguson protests, which followed the decision by a grand jury in St. Louis not to indict the police officer who shot and killed 18-year-old Michael Brown in August.

The Star Tribune spoke to the driver's mother, who said he was returning from work and "didn't even know what was going on" when he was confronted with a group of around 1,000 protesters.

Police later had to close Highway 55 as the protest group moved from the 3rd Precinct north through the city.

It was one of at least five protests across Minnesota Tuesday, with two more held in Minneapolis, one in St. Paul and one in Duluth.

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