A NYPD officer is under investigation after he was filmed violently shoving a female protester to the ground during a George Floyd protest in Brooklyn that saw 200 people arrested.
The cop, who has not been identified, was seen forcefully pushing Dounya Zayer, 20, and sending her flying onto the pavement during a demonstration near Barclay’s Center on Friday night.
Zayer later shared videos of herself from the hospital claiming she suffered a violent seizure from the attack and said she was ‘in no way aggressive’ towards the officer.
An NYPD spokesperson confirmed on Saturday that they are aware of the video circulating on social media and that it is ‘under internal review.’
The NYPD officer who was filmed violently shoving a female protester to the ground in Brooklyn on Friday is under investigation. He has not been identified
The woman shown been violently flung to the ground by an NYPD officer was identified by those at the scene as Dounya Zayer, who later posted about the attack from hospital
It was first shared by Newsweek reporter Jason Lemon who claimed that the officer called the woman a ‘stupid f*****g b***h’ before shoving her.
The NYPD Police Commissioner confirmed over 200 protesters were arrested during last night’s event.
In a press conference on Saturday, Mayor Bill de Blasio, expressed solidarity with demonstrators upset about police brutality, but said there will be a full review of what went wrong.
He said he was upset by videos of the confrontations ‘where protesters were handled very violently’ by police.
‘Any time you see a protester just arbitrarily thrown to the ground by a police officer – that does not reflect our values, that’s unacceptable, and there needs to be consequences,’ he said.
But he added some protesters had come ‘with an agenda of violence and incitement, and they meant to harm police officers, and they did harm police officers.’
The mayor said he was concerned by reports that at least two elected officials were among the people sprayed with irritating chemicals by officers at the scene.
Many people in the crowd threw bottles at police and one group set fire to a police van and battered several other police cruisers with clubs.
Zayer later took to Twitter from the hospital to post several videos to explain what had happened to her.
The young woman hit the ground where she lay knocked out for a few seconds before beginning to move and hold her head. She says the fall caused a massive seizure
Zayer identified herself on Twitter and said she did not touch the officer
She posted a video of her own from a little before the attack which shows the cop approaching
The cop is seen taking a swipe at her phone
‘This was me, and I want to make one thing clear to all the people that are commenting lies below this video. I did NOT spit in this officer’s face. I was wearing a face mask. He told me to get out of the street and then immediately threw me out of the way,’ she wrote.
She also posted a video from her own perspective which showed the officers approaching her as she moved backwards down the street, with one of them taking a swipe at her phone.
Whitney Hu, an activist also taking part in the protest and who first posted the video of Zayer, said on Twitter that she was on the way to the hospital after the attack but was forced to wait outside because of the coronavirus pandemic.
‘The cop pushed her so hard at Barclays & she flung back. She is tiny. Now she’s in the ER after a serious seizure. I’m waiting for updates but have to wait outside because of COVID-19. Please keep my protest sister in your thoughts,’ Hu wrote.
She later revealed that the young woman had woken up and was able to speak to her.
The shocking video shows Zayer being flung to the ground by the police officer and lying still for several seconds before eventually holding her head as other protesters rush to help her and call for people to take his badge number.
From the hospital, the protester revealed that she was thrown because she hadn’t moved out of the officer’s way in time after he asked her to move down the street.
‘I was not rioting, I was protesting,’ she says in the video.
‘I did not even get in his physical space, he was moving in my direction, told me to move and because I didn’t move out of his way in time, he threw me out of the way.
‘He was walking to me, I was standing in place,’ she added.
‘And I never put my hands on him.’
Zayer says the group had been peacefully protesting in front of the officers when somebody from the protesters threw an object like a bottle at the police.
She says this caused the police to ‘stampede’ and she was running backwards when the officer pushed her.
‘If you really want to compare me standing in the middle of the street to the officer that killed George Floyd … it’s not comparable,’ she said.
‘I was protesting for a reason and the officers who were at this protest should back down.’
The video of the attack was criticized by city officials who called for action against the police officer.
New York City Council Speaker Corey Johnson said: ‘This officer needs to be charged with assault. Hard to watch. Brutal and unacceptable.’
He also condemned the widespread police response to the protest in Brooklyn on Friday night.
‘We failed to de-escalate. The NYPD should be easing tensions, not pepper spraying state legislators and shoving peaceful protestors,’ he said, referring to Assemblywoman Diana Richardson who says she was pepper sprayed while peacefully protesting in Barclays plaza.
The officer in the Bronx was shown coughing on a group of people in a video shared Thursday
The group called from his badge number but he walked away and got back into his car
Dozens were arrested Friday in the second night of violent protests in New York City.
Although the night started peacefully, the protests dramatically escalated. Two state legislators say were pepper-sprayed and one handcuffed.
Friday’s violent video comes after police officers were caught coughing on a group of people in the Bronx on Thursday night.
The video shows a cop opening his mouth and pointedly coughing on a group of people without wearing a mask and then walking slowly away.
The group are seen asking for his badge number before the cops climb back into their car.
Violent protests demanding justice for George Floyd spread across the US Friday night, with the CNN headquarters under siege in Atlanta, NYPD officers forced to fend off rioters at a police precinct in Brooklyn and the White House forced to go into lockdown as demonstrators tried to scale the walls.
Looting and fires broke out again in Minneapolis as protesters defied the state curfew and the National Guard failed to keep the city under control, with the Pentagon putting the military police on alert to send to the ravaged city.