The world is watching the situation in Missouri. And events there could have an impact on law enforcement agencies across the country.
Tod Burke is a Professor of criminal justice and a former police officer.
He says the significance of what's happening in Ferguson, extends far beyond the Missouri state line.
One issue is the militarization of law enforcement agencies, and whether a heavy handed response actually encourages more violence.
Burke says agencies need special weapons and tactics to handle any threat, but must also use them wisely.
He would also like to see more police cars equipped with video cameras, and more officers wearing cameras when they are responding to calls.
"I am an advocate for it," Burke told WDBJ7, "because in situations for example what happened in Missouri, if there was a camera, it could either exonerate the police officer or exonerate the victim."
Another aspect of the Ferguson situation that shouldn't be overlooked, Burke says, is that the unrest there is not an isolated incident.
The police shooting was the spark, Burke says, but the conflict there has been brewing for a very long time.