Late Saturday night, Mayor Bill de Blasio told demonstrators taking part in protests in Manhattan and Brooklyn sparked by death of Minneapolis man George Floyd to finally go home.
“To the peaceful protesters out there tonight, we hear your desire to change these issues, the relationship between police and community, the need for justice, the need for real change in our society, we hear you loud and clear,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio during a press conference at Cadman Plaza on Saturday night.
Saturday marked the third day of protests against police brutality in the city. Initially, the protests started out peacefully. But tense demonstrations in Brooklyn and Manhattan resulted in pepper spray, brick-throwing and vandalization of police vehicles.
De Blasio admonished what he said were a small group of outsiders purposefully trying to illicit violence and some protests in both boroughs. The mayor warned that if any protester has the intention of committing an act of violence, they would be arrested.
“The NYPD all day has been working hard, its been a very difficult day for our officers, some of them have been put into a very dangerous situation and that’s not appropriate, that’s not the protest reality that we believe in in this city,” said de Blasio. “This is a city that is capably of creating great change, of great progress, it always has been I have a lot of faith in the people of New York City. We will get through this moment and we will make the changes we need to.”