Video from protests in Buffalo, New York, on Monday showed a person driving an SUV through a line of police officers, leaving two law enforcement officers injured.
As the Buffalo News reported, the incident happened close to 9:40 p.m. local time near Bailey Avenue, where a number of demonstrators had gathered to protest the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. As police moved toward protesters in a tight line, an SUV sped through, struck two, and appeared to drag one of the police officers a short distance. The protest was one of many across upstate New York after Floyd’s death, in addition to demonstrations across New York City.
The officers who were struck have not yet been identified, but Buffalo Mayor Byron W. Brown said that one was a Buffalo police officer and the other was a New York State Trooper. The SUV reportedly drove through just as the officers were attempting to control the crowd with pepper balls. The officers struck by the SUV were in stable condition at the Erie County Medical Center, a Buffalo Police Department spokesperson told the newspaper.
The circumstances of the incident were not entirely clear, including whether the car intentionally struck the officers. Police said that the people inside the vehicle had been shot in an unrelated incident.
“The chaotic scene took place during a 90-minute period near the police station as people gathered in the street and faced off with law enforcement officers,” the report noted. “One video of the incident showed people running, then an SUV driving into a line of officers.”
The three people in the SUV are in police custody, including one who was reportedly brought into surgery at a nearby hospital. It was not clear yet what charges they could face.
The incident capped off what was reported to be a chaotic protest, with some protesters throwing objects at police and the law enforcement responding with tear gas. There were more protests in dozens of cities on Monday, even as local and state officials took more aggressive measures to bring an end to the unrest, including calling in National Guard members and instituting curfews across a number of cities.
In Buffalo, there was no curfew in place on Monday night, but Brown said a decision could come tomorrow to put one in place. He noted that Monday’s protest was set to end before nightfall, saying that the official organizers brought it to an end while some others stayed behind.