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Mayor: 'It was a long and difficult night' - More than 200 arrested, multiple officers injured in Brooklyn protests

The mayor says he will initiate an independent review to look into the details of what happened last night as protests and tensions erupted around the city.

News 12 Staff

May 30, 2020, 11:14 AM

Updated 1,482 days ago

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Mayor Bill de Blasio and NYPD Commissioner Demot Shea say some protesters incited violence during Friday night rallies over the restrained death of George Floyd.
The NYPD reported more than 200 people were arrested, including one arrest for the attempted murder of four police officers. Shea says someone threw a Molotov cocktail into an NYPD car with officers inside.
Officers also recovered firearms, brass knuckles and other objects being used as weapons.
"It is very difficult to practice deescalation when your'e having a brick thrown at you," Shea said.
De Blasio denounced violence by protesters but also spoke out against actions by the NYPD, including reports of some people being pushed by officers and a local leader being pepper sprayed.
New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams called on the mayor and commissioner to scale back on police presence at these protests.
"We cannot have the heavy police presence that I saw at the outset before anyone was outside," Williams said.
The mayor and commissioner say they expect more protests throughout the city Saturday. They are encouraging all demonstrations to be peaceful and say attacks on public servants will not be tolerated.
 
BRIEFING NOTES: 
-The mayor discussed the racism that he says many New Yorkers live with every day, and how the death of George Floyd and also the recent Amy Cooper encounter brought those feelings to the forefront. He discussed the protests that erupted last night in Brooklyn and other places in the city.
-The mayor discussed videos that he says show unacceptable actions by members of the NYPD against protesters that don't reflect the values of the city, or the changes that the department has worked to implement in recent years. 
-The mayor says some protesters came with intention to attack and harm police officers, police vehicles and precincts. He says that's purely unacceptable.
-The mayor says he will initiate an independent review to look into the details of what happened last night, saying that he wants there to be accountability and to determine what can be done to avoid acts of violence.
-The mayor says the city is working to ensure that any more protests in the days to come will be peaceful and that the right to protest is honored.
-Commissioner Shea says about 3,000 people attended last night's Brooklyn protest. Over 200 arrests were made, with "multiple officers injured," Shea says. He says that includes an arrest for attempted murder of 4 officers by an individual throwing a Molotov cocktail into occupied, marked police vehicle. 
-There were bricks thrown, brass knuckles, firearms recovered, Shea says.
"We can do better than this and we must," Shea says. "We fully support, and I want to thank all the police officers, all the members of the community, all the elected officials, who were either out last night working the event, or were demonstrating peacefully."
-Shea says there will be zero tolerance for any individuals looking to cause violence.
-De Blasio says video that appeared to show an officer shoving a protester into the ground is "completely unacceptable," and says the independent review will look to bring accountability.
-Shea notes there was no looting reporting or loss of life despite the clashes that erupted during the protests.
 
PHOTOS: George Floyd protests in Brooklyn
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