Thousands Protest in NYC to Condemn Federal Enforcement Tactics Used Against Activists

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Protests against police violence gained new life over the weekend as marches walked in solidarity with the activists facing off with federal authorities in Portland, Oregon.

Over the weekend, thousands gathered in New York City and participated in a massive march across the Brooklyn Bridge to condemn the tactics used by federal law enforcement across the United States.

Marchers were accompanied by Street Riders NYC, a collective offering support to marchers by sending bikes to act as a buffer and shield protesters from cars and police.

The immense crowd of protesters taking the Manhattan inbound roadway at the march across the Brooklyn Bridge on July 25, 2020. (Photo by Erik McGregor/LightRocket via Getty Images)

The crowd gathered in Cadman Plaza in Brooklyn on Saturday before marching across the Brooklyn Bridge into Manhattan. Speakers at Saturday's rally included Gwen Carr, mother of Eric Garner.

The face of George Floyd is still present in daily marches. Images of Floyd's face covered numerous posters, held up side-by-side with signs that read "defund the police" and "Black lives matter."

On Sunday, hundreds of protesters headed north on FDR Drive, blocking traffic for nearly an hour. Their message was Black women's lives matter.

Police say 14 people were arrested during the marches but it was unclear whether the arrests were from Saturday, Sunday or both days. At least six NYPD vehicles were damaged, police said. An individual was caught on video striking a police van with a picket sign on Saturday. Several others were spray painting "FTP" on the vehicles.

Following the deployment of federal law enforcement troops in Portland, President Donald Trump has said additional forces could move into other large cities in protests and acts of violence did not stop.

The president named New York City among a shortlist of potential deployment spots, but stopped short of sending agents, for now. On Wednesday, Trump announced he would send federal agents to Chicago and Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Mayor Bill de Blasio has said he won't allow the president to send in federal agents to his city. He doubled down on Sunday, telling Reverend Al Sharpton on MSNBC that he will see Trump in court if the president decides to deploy federal troops in NYC.

Participants carried a burning NYPD cruiser puppet at the march across the Brooklyn Bridge on July 25, 2020. (Photo by Erik McGregor/LightRocket via Getty Images)

"We don't want them here. It would create more danger in this city to have officers who are not prepared for our circumstance come in," the mayor said. "I think it's patently unconstitutional and it would be counterproductive – when you look at what's happening in Portland, it's creating more violence and more chaos to have those federal officers there."

At least two investigations are underway into the use of force by federal agents in Portland and the reported improper detainment of protesters picked up in unmarked vehicles.

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