New York police report that two officers were assaulted by marchers that took to the streets to protest police violence on Saturday. Police also reported finding a bag of newly-purchased hammers that were apparently intended for use as weapons.
Screaming “No Justice, No Peace” and carrying signs that proclaimed “Black Lives Matter” and “Bring The System Down,” thousands of protesters hit the streets of the Big Apple, joining similar protests in other cities this weekend.
Many of the protesters were motivated by the death of New York resident Eric Garner, who died after police officers choked him while attempting to arrest him in July. Garner’s arrest was recorded on video and soon went viral. Weeks ago, a New York grand jury refused to indict the officers involved in the death, sparking the protests.
While many protesters were peaceful, not all were, and some violence, threats of violence, and arrests occurred.
In once incident, a trash can was thrown at officers by a protester near the Brooklyn Bridge. After the can was thrown, officers attempted to make an arrest but a group of protesters swarmed them, assaulting two officers in the process.
“We will not allow a small contingent of agitators to bring disorder and violence to these protests,” New York Mayor Bill de Blasio warned after the incident was reported. “Those who reject peaceful protest and provoke violence can expect immediate arrest and prosecution.”
Chief of Department James P. O’Neill agreed, saying, “This is where we have to step in and make arrests. We cannot have our officers assaulted.”
The officers assaulted sustained non life-threatening injuries.
Police also reported that they discovered a bag filled with newly-purchased hammers and a face mask, obviously meant for use as weapons during the protest.
The NYPD said they were told by marchers that the items were “trademark items for those who are looking to wreak havoc while hiding within a crowd.”
At least one other protester was arrested for disorderly conduct.
Illegal fireworks were also set off by protesters on Madison Avenue and the Brooklyn Bridge.
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