Two women were arrested after police said they dumped cans of black paint on the block-long mural on Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue.
Bystanders shot video of the chaotic scene showing police surrounding a Black woman as she used her hands to spread paint on the mural’s bright yellow letters.
An NYPD officer slips and falls during an attempt to detain a protester pouring black paint on the Black Lives Matter mural outside of Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue in the Manhattan borough of New York on Saturday. (AP Photo/Yuki Iwamura)
“Refund the police,” the woman screamed. “Jesus matters! We will never support Black Lives Matters!”
One of the officers surrounding the woman slipped on the paint and fell to the ground, injuring his head and arm, police said. He was listed in stable condition at Bellevue Hospital.
“Thankfully our brother will be OK, but this nonsense needs to stop,” the Police Benevolent Association, the city’s largest police union, wrote on Twitter. “Our city is in crisis. Paint on the street helps no one.”
The women’s names and information on possible charges against them weren’t immediately available.
The incident happened less than 24 hours after three people were caught on video Friday dumping blue paint on the mural. They were arrested, charged with criminal mischief and released with an order to appear in court.
New York Police Department officers attempt to detain a protester who they say used black paint to deface the Black Lives Matter mural outside of Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue Saturday. (AP Photo/Yuki Iwamura)
A 64-year-old woman was also arrested Friday after police said she was illegally posting fliers of 1-year-old shooting victim Davell Gardner Jr. The flier featured a picture of the infant with the message: “I wasn’t killed by a cop. I was killed by a Black person. Where’s BLM?”
Meanwhile, police are searching for a man who splattered red paint on the mural Monday.
The words Black Lives Matter have been painted on streets in New York and elsewhere in recent weeks to show support for the racial justice movement after the recent police killings of George Floyd and other Black men and women.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.