NYPD

George Floyd protesters, NYPD clash in Brooklyn

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced there will be an independent review into the protests.

Protesters demonstrating the death of George Floyd faceoff against the NYPD on May 29th in Park Slope.

Protesters demonstrating the death of George Floyd faceoff against the NYPD on May 29th in Park Slope. Zach Williams

The fight against the coronavirus pandemic took a momentary back seat after a hectic night of protests in New York City over the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

At a demonstration attended by thousands at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn on Friday, protests against the killing of Floyd – and against racial violence in general – the New York City Police Department got into several intense altercations with protesters. Peaceful demonstrations escalated to standoffs between protesters and police, which escalated to violence as the night wore on.

But on Saturday morning, in the clear light of day, a press conference with local elected officials turned attention to the people they said were responsible for that escalation, including New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. “They escalated,” state Sen. John Liu said of the NYPD officers on the scene. “And you know who is accountable for that? The mayor himself. De Blasio needs to apologize for what happened here last night.”

New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams also criticized the NYPD’s reaction to the planned protest at the outset, saying that “rows and rows” of police officers positioned outside the Barclays Center before the demonstration even began was unnecessary. “You are setting a fault line,” Williams said.

If de Blasio expected a boost in his public approval rating after his joint announcement with Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Friday afternoon that New York City was finally on track to start reopening from coronavirus-related closures on June 8, those expectations were quickly deflated. Throughout the night, as protesters and reporters tweeted videos of police pushing, tackling and pepper-spraying protesters, elected officials called de Blasio out. “What the hell is going on, @NYCMayor?” New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer tweeted. “You can’t criticize the Minneapolis Police in the morning and not hold your own accountable in the evening. Live up to your words.”

At his own briefing on Saturday morning, de Blasio repeated some of the sentiments he shared on Friday about the burden of racism and discrimination – witnessed not only in racial violence, but also through the pandemic. “Every day is perverted by racism,” de Blasio said on Saturday. “The coronavirus crisis has created a depth of pain that has still not been accounted for,” he added, noting that the loss has been felt even more deeply in communities of color, which have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic.

Addressing the escalation to violence, de Blasio criticized both the NYPD and protesters, who he said came out only to initiate violence against cops. “Some protesters last night came with an agenda of violence and incitement,” de Blasio said. “They meant to harm police officers and they did harm police officers.” De Blasio said that protesters who came with the intention to incite violence represented just a small fraction of all protesters.

NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea, who joined de Blasio on Saturday, echoed the mayor’s remarks. Shea said that multiple officers were injured, more than 200 arrests were made – including one for attempted murder when a Molotov cocktail was thrown at an occupied, marked police van. “We practice de-escalation, but it is very difficult to practice de-escalation when you’re having a brick thrown at your head,” Shea said, adding that the total number of injured officers is still being tallied. “It is by the grace of God that we don’t have dead officers today.”

De Blasio said Saturday that he will immediately initiate an independent review to determine what went wrong on Friday night and “hold people accountable.”

“We were told PD was given orders to de-escalate & respect peaceful protest,” New York City Councilman Justin Brannan tweeted. “Instead we got an army of cops in riot gear, protestors assaulted, legislators maced, and cop cars torched. This is not the city anybody wants.”

Though de Blasio said that there will be accountability for both NYPD officers who acted inappropriately and protesters who initiated violence, some were less confident about that prospect. “I am confident that protesters who do violence to officers will be held accountable,” New York City Councilman Ritchie Torres said. “I am not so confident that officers who do violence to protesters will face the same accountability.  That is the problem.”

X
This website uses cookies to enhance user experience and to analyze performance and traffic on our website. We also share information about your use of our site with our social media, advertising and analytics partners. Learn More / Do Not Sell My Personal Information
Accept Cookies
X
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Do Not Sell My Personal Information

When you visit our website, we store cookies on your browser to collect information. The information collected might relate to you, your preferences or your device, and is mostly used to make the site work as you expect it to and to provide a more personalized web experience. However, you can choose not to allow certain types of cookies, which may impact your experience of the site and the services we are able to offer. Click on the different category headings to find out more and change our default settings according to your preference. You cannot opt-out of our First Party Strictly Necessary Cookies as they are deployed in order to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting the cookie banner and remembering your settings, to log into your account, to redirect you when you log out, etc.). For more information about the First and Third Party Cookies used please follow this link.

Allow All Cookies

Manage Consent Preferences

Strictly Necessary Cookies - Always Active

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data, Targeting & Social Media Cookies

Under the California Consumer Privacy Act, you have the right to opt-out of the sale of your personal information to third parties. These cookies collect information for analytics and to personalize your experience with targeted ads. You may exercise your right to opt out of the sale of personal information by using this toggle switch. If you opt out we will not be able to offer you personalised ads and will not hand over your personal information to any third parties. Additionally, you may contact our legal department for further clarification about your rights as a California consumer by using this Exercise My Rights link

If you have enabled privacy controls on your browser (such as a plugin), we have to take that as a valid request to opt-out. Therefore we would not be able to track your activity through the web. This may affect our ability to personalize ads according to your preferences.

Targeting cookies may be set through our site by our advertising partners. They may be used by those companies to build a profile of your interests and show you relevant adverts on other sites. They do not store directly personal information, but are based on uniquely identifying your browser and internet device. If you do not allow these cookies, you will experience less targeted advertising.

Social media cookies are set by a range of social media services that we have added to the site to enable you to share our content with your friends and networks. They are capable of tracking your browser across other sites and building up a profile of your interests. This may impact the content and messages you see on other websites you visit. If you do not allow these cookies you may not be able to use or see these sharing tools.

If you want to opt out of all of our lead reports and lists, please submit a privacy request at our Do Not Sell page.

Save Settings
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Cookie List

A cookie is a small piece of data (text file) that a website – when visited by a user – asks your browser to store on your device in order to remember information about you, such as your language preference or login information. Those cookies are set by us and called first-party cookies. We also use third-party cookies – which are cookies from a domain different than the domain of the website you are visiting – for our advertising and marketing efforts. More specifically, we use cookies and other tracking technologies for the following purposes:

Strictly Necessary Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Functional Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Performance Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Social Media Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Targeting Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.