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Ferguson One Year Later: Local Pastor Says Brown Killing Still Relevant

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SACRAMENTO –

Sunday marks the one year anniversary since 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot and killed by police officer Darren Wilson in Ferguson Missouri.

On the eve of that anniversary, a local Sacramento pastor has made the trip to the St. Louis area to council that community which is still in mourning.

"This is a traumatized community, and we want to stand with them as the faith community as the clergy, we want to stand with them through this moment," said Pastor Les Simmons, who works with Sacramento Area Congregations Together, a non-profit grassroots organization.

Already in Ferguson on Saturday, Simmons told FOX40 he doesn't think the anniversary of Brown's death will bring violent riots like the grand jury decision did in November.

"I do believe that the climate here is peaceful for sure," Simmons said.

The pastor at South Sacramento Christian Center, on Stockton Blvd., Simmons made several similar trips to Ferguson last year.

First when Brown's death first happened last August, and then in November when the grand jury decided not to indict Ferguson Officer Wilson.

Simmons said he came to Missouri this time to continue the push for changing the way law enforcement interacts with African American communities across the nation.

"So conversation has to have change. And I think we're still in the conversation mode," Simmons told FOX40. "Ferguson is being staged as the new civil rights ground. Ground zero for really taking seriously this conversation of race."

While Simmons is glad the nation is talking about the issues, he says all the officer involved shootings of African Americans over the past year highlights that there's still a lot of work to be done and that the problem isn't just region.

"I think a year later it's still relevant. And the mood here is still even mourning you saw death after death involving police and community. Not only here in Ferguson but throughout the nation," Simmons said.