While many Americans tuned into watch the annual tree lighting at Rockefeller Center, just blocks away, demonstrators marched through the streets of New York to protest a Staten Island jury’s decision not to indict NYPD Officer Daniel Pantaleo for the death of Eric Garner. The protesters demanded justice not just for Garner, who died as a result of a prohibited chokehold, but for the multiple unarmed black men who have been failed by the nation’s criminal justice system.
With signs, chants, and cameras, they walked for their cause past Rockefeller Center, through Times Square, and all the way to the West Side Highway in an effort to #ShutItDown. ANIMAL followed the march and witnessed several arrests and intense confrontations between civilians and police officers on the highway.
The video above, taken just below 50th Street around 9PM, captures the pandemonium: Water bottles were flying through the air, people were being shoved and pushed into the bushes in the median, and protesters swarmed both the north and southbound lanes on one of Manhattan’s major arteries. By 10PM things had de-escalated, but the strip of highway remained closed.
(Photos/Video: Bucky Turco/ANIMALNewYork)