TOMPKINS COUNTY, NY (WSKG) – More than one speaker during the Ithaca Common Council meeting on Wednesday night called on Mayor Svante Myrick to release a video of an incident involving protestors and a car.
On Thursday morning he did.
Some footage is from a camera on the police department. It shows a car stopped as protestors march in the street toward the building. After the protesters stop, the car begins to move forward slowly, causing some people to scatter and others to try to block the car. There were approximately forty people involved in the protest.
In a statement released with the video, Myrick said he spoke to some protestors and the driver of the car. He said he believes the people in the car were not trying to harm the protestors, and the protestors reacted out of fear because of deadly clashes involving cars at other protests around the country.
Myrick said police “cannot be everywhere and our safety is ultimately in our hands.” He urged people to be patient with each other and to assume positive intent.
A police investigation is in progress. That investigation is about an accusation by a bystander who claims he was assaulted by protesters when he tried to help the driver. None of that was visible on the video released by the Mayor Thursday morning.
This was the 14th consecutive Sunday protest against police brutality since the killing of George Floyd.
WSKG asked the Ithaca Police Department why the street was not blocked to vehicular traffic as it had been for previous protests. No one immediately responded to our questions.