Chaos in New York City – A Thousand NYPD Officers Respond as Video Game Giveaway Goes Awry
It's been a wild afternoon in Manhattan, NY's Union Square. A popular Twitch streamer, Kai Cenat, held a giveaway for a PlayStation 5. This led to thousands gathering in a very chaotic and dangerous scene in the area on Friday afternoon.
A large crowd — which was described mostly as "young adults and teenagers" — gathered in the square by 3 p.m. on Friday.
It's not clear exactly what led to the wild situation in Manhattan, but TV reports say that people were seen throwing garbage at police, jumping on cars, throwing bottles, and they were even taking down barriers.
Photos of chaos and rioting in New York during livestreamer's event
Television chopper footage from the area showed the terrifying moments:
In fact, the situation led to the highest level of police mobilization from the NYPD. The New York City Police Department reportedly called on one thousand offices to respond to dangerous situations, according to an estimate from NBC New York.
Cenat was escorted out by police officers and placed in custody. Kai Cenat has not been charged yet, but he is being questioned by police.
is being questioned by police Other arrests were made, but the exact nature of those charges (if any) was not immediately clear.
Police officers who responded to the scene set up barriers and worked to disperse the crowd. As of 5 pm, police had made progress on de-escalating the situation as the crowd began to disperse, New York's ABC 7 reported early Friday evening.
Multiple Officers & Civilians Injured in the Terrifying Incident
Multiple police officers and civilians (mostly young people) were injured in the incident.
In fact, Jeffrey Maddrey, The Chief of the New York Police Department told the media at a press conference around 6 pm Friday that they crowd threw construction materials from a nearby construction site. In fact, Maddrey said the crowd was carrying shovels, lighting off fireworks at each other and at police officers.
"Our officers were attacked. We were crushed, we were pushed. I was hit with multiple objects as well," the Chief said. However, the exact number of police officers who were injured (or treated) was not immediately clear. In fact, Maddrey said he personally suffered some injuries in the chaos as well.
Additionally, police confirmed that many civilians who in the crowd also suffered injuries in the chaos, that has been declared an "unlawful assembly."
"It was a lot of people. It was uncontrolled. It took a while to get it under control, and a lot of people got hurt today," Maddrey said.
"A lot of people got hurt today," he said.
Police remain on the scene.