January 19, 2021 4:49 PM | With information from EFE
15 minutes. A march organized by the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement to commemorate activist Martin Luther King Jr. this Monday in New York turned violent and resulted in 29 people arrested and 11 police officers injured, local media reported on Tuesday.
Hundreds of participants in the “Black Liberation March” left the Barclays Center stadium, the BLM meeting point, and arrived in Manhattan. A large number of local police officers (NYPD) had been deployed there and clashes broke out.
According to the head of the NYPD, Dermott Shea, to the local channel NY1, “in a day to remember Martin Luther King there was a march that consisted of violence, throwing bottles, breaking properties, calling for the death of the agents and razing the city, “which he considered the” antithesis “of the legacy of the historic anti-racist activist.
However, videos posted on the networks show moments of tension where agents corner and charge into the crowd. Similarly, some protesters told the media that the policemen pushed and grabbed people who were on the sidewalk and had not stood up to them.
In total, 29 people were arrested for disorderly conduct, obstruction of authority, resistance to arrest and road blockade, most of them released with a court summons; while 11 policemen were injured, one of them hit in the helmet with a bottle, but none seriously.
The police chief said the violence was “created by people who want to destroy our way of life and harm the police.” He also added that they attend demonstrations without having “intention to protest peacefully.”
Protests in New York
This latest episode of clashes between protesters and police comes days after New York Attorney General Letitia James sued the NYPD for a “pattern of excessive, brutal and illegal force against peaceful protesters” in anti-racist protests last summer. after George Floyd’s death.
In that sense, Shea addressed James in statements to NY1: “This is the news for the (attorney general): they are actions caused by people who want to destroy our lifestyle and our city“.
Last summer’s protests and their police response led to the creation of state laws prohibiting aggressive tactics, among other things. For its part, New York City diverted about $ 1 billion from the NYPD budget to other departments.