A viral video appears to show an NYPD officer hitting a bicyclist with his baton before other officers join in.
The person who posted the video to Twitter, where it has been viewed more than 2 million times, wrote, “People stuck in traffic are witnessing NYPD beat up folks on their way home.”
The video starts with one officer hitting a man with a bike before others join in. “Oh my God,” a woman says in the video. Watch the video here:
People stuck in traffic are witnessing NYPD beat up folks on their way home. pic.twitter.com/AkUGPQQOIf
— Josh Fox BlackLivesMatter (@joshfoxfilm) June 4, 2020
The man who posted it wrote, “This was sent to me by a friend of the women in the car, @tommiesunshine. Stuck in traffic for nearly an hour on 50th street and third Ave.”
Here’s what you need to know:
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Called the Video ‘Horrifying’
Horrifying. You start with the tiny possibility that two officers may be walking over to deescalate the abusive one.
Instead, they join in beating a man trying to get out of traffic.
This isn’t a problem of bad apples or incidents. This is an institutional and systemic crisis. https://t.co/eoBXXnNXZV
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) June 4, 2020
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez shared the above video and wrote, “Horrifying. You start with the tiny possibility that two officers may be walking over to deescalate the abusive one. Instead, they join in beating a man trying to get out of traffic. This isn’t a problem of bad apples or incidents. This is an institutional and systemic crisis.”
Another video also showed officers with batons and people with bicycles. “NYPD succeeded in surrounding the peaceful protest and charging from all 4 sides at an intersection with batons and bicycles. Their behavior is truly revolting,” wrote a man who shared that video.
NYPD succeeded in surrounding the peaceful protest and charging from all 4 sides at an intersection with batons and bicycles. Their behavior is truly revolting. Not a badge number visible and @NYCMayor and @NYPDShea do not care. Black Lives Matter. pic.twitter.com/7aftfzVUo0
— Nathan Quist (@NTWQ2) June 4, 2020
“Toxic Police Culture mixing with Toxic Car Culture: NYPD consider a person on a bicycle a curfew breaker worthy of a beating, while considering hundreds of people sitting in their cars at the same time as good citizens,” another person wrote.
People responded with horror. “This is horrific! How do we stop this? We can’t continue just watching this happen and do nothing. There must be something in the immediate future we can do. How can we stop this already?” wrote one person in response to AOC’s tweet. “Abolish the police. Use the funding to invest in communities,” wrote another. “if de blasio isn’t going to reign in what has essentially become a street gang, he needs to resign,” a woman wrote.
Heavy has reached out to the NYPD for comment.
Other Videos Have Gone Viral During the Unrest
— Brittany Miller (@Brittm_tv) May 29, 2020
A series of other intense videos also emerged from cities throughout the country as George Floyd protests and riots escalated into violence in some areas. For example, in Chicago there was an all-out street brawl between police officers and protesters, according to this video. In Atlanta, a video caught a bicycle officer shoving a bike at a woman. Protesters threw an American flag in a river outside Trump Tower in Chicago. In New York City, videos captured two NYPD squad cars running over protesters.
In Minneapolis, Chauvin was charged with second-degree murder, third-degree murder and manslaughter charges. Businesses were torched and looted in Minneapolis, and the protests and riots then spread throughout the country in many major cities, with some peaceful and some not.