Oh my god. What is the @NYPDnews doing?
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Footage has emerged of two police cars being swarmed by protesters in New York before one of them decides to drive through the crowd.
The protests in New York City were over the death of Minneapolis man George Floyd and other police killings of black men.
Video that was shot in Brooklyn showed two NYPD cruisers driving into protesters who were pushing against a barricade against a police car and pelting it with objects.
The first patrol car initially remained stationary in the middle of the road before demonstrators approached.
Several videos show two NYPD squad cars ramming into multiple protesters
When a second squad car arrives on scene, it runs into several people who struggle to get out of the way
People were pushed out of the way as a second police car arrived on the scene
The activists then began pelting the car with bottles, traffic cones and even bags of trash.
A second NYPD cruiser then pulled alongside the first but appeared to be in a rush to push through the crowds.
Those gathered swarmed the second patrol car which then, without warning, suddenly began to accelerate.
It saw at least three people pushed to the side and almost run over and the police car drove on down the street.
A second patrol vehicle arrives on scene and appears to be in a hurry to get through the crowd
People can at first be seen throwing bottles and plastic cones at one of the cars
The car rams into a barricade that people are standing against
When a patrol car arrived on scene it was immediately swarmed by protestors
From the footage posted online it does not appear that any of the protesters were knocked down, however there were plenty of screams as the car raced by.
Mayor Bill de Blasio said the incident is under investigation, but emphasized that the officers may have had no other choice.
'I'm not going to blame officers who were trying to deal with an absolutely impossible situation. The folks who were converging on that police car did the wrong thing to begin with, and they created an untenable situation,' he said. 'I wish the officers had found a different approach, but let's begin at the beginning. The protesters in that video did the wrong thing to surround that police car, period.
"People who represent the communities of our city and the residents of our city are not joining negative and violent protests," de Blasio said.
'Our country has a sickness. We have to be out here,' said Brianna Petrisko, among those at lower Manhattan's Foley Square, where most were wearing masks amid the coronavirus pandemic. 'This is the only way we're going to be heard.'
The large crowds involved, with many people not wearing masks or social distancing, raised concerns among health experts about the potential for helping spread the coronavirus pandemic at a time when overall deaths are on the decline nationwide and much of the country is in the process of reopening society and the economy.
After a tumultuous Friday night, racially diverse crowds took to the streets again for mostly peaceful demonstrations in dozens of cities from coast to coast.
The previous day's protests also started calmly, but many descended into violence later in the day.
A NYPD police car is set on fire as protesters clash with police in Brooklyn
An NYPD patrol car was seen to be in flames on Saturday night during protests over Floyd
A NYPD police officer is removed after being injured as they clash with protesters in Brooklyn
Protesters smash an NYPD police car as they clash with police during a march against the death in Minneapolis police custody of George Floyd, in the Brooklyn borough of New York
Protesters in Brooklyn used heavy objects to smash the rear windows of a police van