NEW YORK – New York City police officers surrounded, shoved and yelled expletives at two Associated Press journalists covering protests Tuesday in the latest aggression against members of the media during a week of unrest around the country.
Portions of the incident were captured on video by videojournalist Robert Bumsted, who was working with photographer Maye-E Wong to document the protests in lower Manhattan over the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
The video shows more than a half-dozen officers confronting the journalists as they filmed and took photographs of police ordering protesters to leave the area near Fulton and Broadway shortly after an 8 p.m. curfew took effect.
An officer, using an expletive, orders them to go home. Bumsted is heard on video explaining the press are considered “essential workers" and are allowed to be on the streets. An officer responds “I don't give a s—-.” Another tells Bumsted “get the f—- out of here you piece of s—-."
Bumsted and Wong said officers shoved them, separating them from each other and pushing them toward Bumsted's car, which was parked nearby. At one point Bumsted said he was pinned against his car. He is heard on video telling the officer that Wong has his keys and he needs them to leave the area. Officers then allowed Wong to approach and the two got in the vehicle and left.
Both journalists were wearing AP identification and identified themselves as media.
“They didn't care,” Wong said. “They were just shoving me.”
NYPD officials said they would “review this as soon as possible.”