Police say a Black Lives Matter march encountered a vehicle whose occupants had previously participated in a pro-Trump counter-protest in Duffy Square.
The vehicle, a black Ford Taurus police interceptor, was eastbound on 46th Street where it stopped at a red light at Broadway
At that moment, the protest -- comprised of a couple of hundred people -- started to move in that direction and onto 46th Street.
The protesters were said to have recognized the vehicle from the prior counter-protests and surrounded it, including a bicyclist who blocked the car from moving further.
The vehicle involved appears to be formerly used as a police cruiser, complete with a bull bar in the front, likely purchased at a surplus auction. Police say it was not an NYPD vehicle.
Two people struck the car window, one with a punch and one banging on it.
At that point, the car started to accelerate through the crowd and ultimately sped away, making a quick right onto Broadway into traffic.
"We are lucky there was no vehicle collision," a police official said.
Officers had previously asked the counter-protesters to leave the area and cleared a route for them under the Marriott Marquis Hotel, using its taxi stand. But the driver instead continued east on 46th Street.
Authorities are now investigating whether a crime was committed. Detectives are attempting to talk to the people in the vehicle or the protesters at the location.
They say no one has come forward or claimed they were hurt, though the protesters have their own volunteer medical unit to treat minor injuries.
Councilmember Keith Powers says his office will look into it.
My office is looking into tonight’s incident in Times Square. Hoping everyone is safe.— Keith Powers (@KeithPowersNYC) September 4, 2020
Using a vehicle to hurt peaceful protestors is unacceptable and must be stopped.
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