Since the death of George Floyd, there has been massive protests across the country. The protests have continually been met with force. Last week, a video surfaced of an NYPD officer pushing protester Dounya Zayer to the ground.
Due to numerous complaints, after the video went viral, Officer Vincent D’Andraia, 28, who worked at Brooklyn’s 73rd Precinct, has been placed under arrest.
D’Andraia turned himself into a Brooklyn precinct Tuesday morning.
Officer D’Andraia currently faces the following charges: assault, criminal mischief, harassment and menacing.
Prosecutors are still reviewing footage and receiving statements, to see if any other officers, such as Commander Craig Eldelman, should be charged as well.
Through the investigation, District Attorney Erik Gonzalez has learned that D’Andraia cursed at the protester, knocked her cell phone out of her hand and shoved her to the ground.
The protesters head hit the pavement causing a concussion and a seizure, according to the complaint.
According to CNN:
“As District Attorney I cannot tolerate the use of excessive force against anyone exercising this Constitutionally guaranteed right,” Gonzalez said. “This is especially true of those who are sworn to protect us and uphold the law. I am deeply troubled by this unnecessary assault. We will now seek to hold this defendant accountable.”
During arraignment, D’Andraia acknowledged the charges, but remained silent for the rest of the hearing.
Officer D’Andraia has been released on the conditions of not contacting Zayer.
D’Andraia is currently suspended without pay and his case has been turned over to the NYPD’s advocate for further review.
The Police Benevolent Association union president Patrick J. Lynch blamed the mayor and believed the investigation is politically motivated.
“Once again, Mayor (Bill) de Blasio and the NYPD brass are sacrificing cops to save their own skin,” said union president Patrick J. Lynch in a statement. “They created the failed strategy for managing these demonstrations. They sent police officers out to do the job with no support and no clear plan. We are utterly alone in our efforts to protect our city.”
Zayer released a video statement on Twitter from her hospital bed.
The officer “should have had the self-restraint to not hurt the people he’s supposed to be protecting.”
Since the protests began, activists have formed a Google spreadsheet documenting more than 500 instances officers have attacked peaceful protesters and journalists.
Below is a compilation video of all the times the NYPD has been caught attacking protesters.