Protests sprung up in New York City in the wake of the Kyle Rittenhouse acquittal, with hundreds of demonstrators gathering in Brooklyn and Queens in opposition to the jury's verdict.
Rittenhouse, 18, was on trial in Wisconsin for the killing of two men shot dead during protests against police brutality in the state last year. A jury acquitted him of all charges following a high-profile trial.
As word of the verdict spread across the county late Friday, so did the times and meeting locations of protests from coast to coast, including New York City.
By 7 p.m., hundreds had gathered in Brooklyn outside of Barclays Center to listen to speakers before marching into Manhattan. The group, several hundred in size, walked across the Brooklyn Bridge airing their frustrations with system that came to the non-guilty verdict.
"I wasn't surprised, I expected it. I knew exactly what was gonna happen. That's what always happens," Kelli Cooper said Friday. "We're tired, it's the same old go-around."
"People have shown up. And this is what's most important, that we continue to be in the streets, that we continue to organize, that we make sure they know how movement isn't going anywhere," another protester said.
Over in Queens, a smaller group had amassed to voice opposition to the trial result. Police estimate the size was closer to 40 people.
Among the demonstration in Middle Village were five protesters who police say threw garbage cans in front of police vehicles, ripped up American flags and Blue Lives Matter flags, and damaged a number of parked cars. One from the group allegedly shattered a front windshield while a second spray painted the back of another.
"The NYPD takes its responsibility to protect the 1st amendment rights of peaceful demonstrators seriously. Just as important is the safety of NYers & the protection of property from people breaking the law in the name of protest. As seen tonight in Queens, they will be arrested," the NYPD twitter account posted Friday night.
The group of five, that police described as "wearing all black and appeared to be Black Bloc," were arrested and issued desk appearance tickets. They're scheduled back in court early next month.
Mayor-elect Eric Adams, Public Advocate Jumaane Williams and Comptroller-elect Brad Lander released a joint statement Saturday afternoon calling for stricter gun laws and peaceful demonstrations.
"New Yorkers are united in support of safety and justice, and against violence and division. As some of us take to the streets today to make our voices heard, we must demonstrate our conviction through peaceful protest so that the country hears our message for a better way forward.”