• R.L. Brody

Videos Show Pro-Police Demonstrators In BK Unleashing Racist, Sexist Vitriol Against Counter-Protest

Updated: Oct 12, 2020

Gothamist

By Sydney Pereira


A pro-NYPD rally in Dyker Heights devolved into physical attacks and racist, sexist language used against a group of counter-protesters on Saturday morning, according to videos and witnesses.


One protester, who was marshaling the counter-protest, said he went to the hospital after he was hit in the groin during an altercation.


About two dozen or so protesters against police brutality and systemic racism showed up at Bay Ridge Parkway and 13th Avenue to counter a demonstration of hundreds of protesters supporting the NYPD.


"No interference with their pro-cop rally had occurred. We were all consolidated on one corner for the most part," Noah Weston, a Bay Ridge resident who went to the hospital after he was beaten in the groin, told Gothamist. "No chanting had started ... They just immediately started screaming at us."


Some pro-police marchers yelled that they hoped protesters would be raped, calling them a c***, and made racist statements like saying Black lives were "garbage," among other explicit, racist, and sexist language.


"There wasn't a clash. There was a massive act of aggression of them against us before we even started demonstrating, before we even started protesting," said Weston, who wasn't chanting since his main purpose at the protest was to guide the protest and keep marchers protected as a marshal.


After Weston was beat in the groin, "I doubled over in pain because, that hurt, and basically one of our medics came up to me and said to me that I looked pale as hell, and I couldn't see straight."


"It really looked like a Trump rally," Weston added. "I have to question what this is about on their end, at the end of the day. Is it about police who they think protect everybody or is it about the MAGA movement and white supremacy?"


A man punches a Black Lives Matter counter-protester in Brooklyn July 11th, 2020. SEAN SIROTA


During the march, a Blue Lives Matter protester shoved journalist Oliya, who goes by Oliya Scootercaster, of the breaking news video news Freedom News TV, formerly Scootercaster, into a tree, she said in an email.


After she was shoved, a neighbor began filming from above and another person from the same group grabbed her camera gear and attacked her with it, according to video and the camerawoman.


The journalist says her camera gear was destroyed and that an officer refused to help her file a police report until he had evidence of the assault on the video a neighbor captured.


The Blue Lives Matter protest was organized with a "nod" to the KKK, according to counter-protester Abdullah Younus.


A flier for the "Rally To Back The Blue" shows the march was scheduled for July 11th at 11 a.m. with protesters to walk 11 blocks—appearing to signify support for Ku Klux Klan since the 11th letter of the alphabet is K and three 11's add up to 33. According to the Anti-Defamation League, the number 33 is used in messaging by KKK adherents. The flier was shared in an email by the chairwoman of the Brooklyn Conservative Party Fran Vella-Marrone, according to a screenshot of the email shared with Gothamist.


Younus said such "back the blue" pro-NYPD rallies have been increasing the last few years.

"It's just been a direct response to what [the organizing] we've been doing," said Younus, national political committee for the Democratic Socialists of America. "This was an escalation that we need to be prepared for in the future."


Republican Assemblymember Nicole Malliotakis led the march in Dyker Heights.

In a video, Malliotakis, who's running against Democratic Rep. Max Rose in a Staten Island and South Brooklyn congressional district, held a bullhorn chanting "U-S-A" alongside other marchers with American flags and the thin blue line flag for "Blue Lives Matter."


When she spoke to a crowd, she referenced rising shootings in NYC, blaming Democrats for anti-police rhetoric—echoing the NYPD's top cops. She also joined a pro-cop march in Staten Island to the 122nd Precinct.


Malliotakis's office did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the physical violence and verbal attacks that transpired in Dyker Heights.


A 70-year-old Army veteran, Lou Gentile, told the Post he came to the Brooklyn rally with three buses of other demonstrators from Staten Island to "defend my police."


An NYPD spokesperson said he had no record of arrests from the protests in the 68th Precinct. The NYPD did not immediately respond to an email with additional questions about the protests.


Councilmember Justin Brannan called the actions "vile, reprehensible, and left me ashamed," describing what happened as "descending into a despicable, hateful mobocracy."


"This included spitting in the face of counter-protesters, telling one woman to 'get raped,' and saying 'black life doesn't matter - it's garbage,' calling other counter-protesters 'whores,' and threatening violence and physically assaulting them," Brannan said in a statement. "Meanwhile, in the wake of these incidents, current and former elected officials, including Assemblymember Nicole Malliotakis, former State Senator Marty Golden, Conservative Party Chairs Gerard Kessar and Fran Vella-Marrone, and others, are applauding and celebrating this rally as a great success."


Brannan called on those present to "denounce this behavior, apologize to the counter-protesters who they also represent, acknowledge that Black life does indeed matter, and inform their constituents that they can certainly support the police and fight racism at the same time."


Another counter protest is slated for 5:30 p.m. Sunday at 86th Street and Fourth Avenue. The counter-protest flier says the Blue Lives Matter demonstrators will march to the 68th Precinct.

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