NewsLocal NewsManhattan

Actions

Manhattan Black Lives Matter mural vandalized twice Saturday; 2 arrested

BLM Vandal.jpeg
Posted at 4:10 PM, Jul 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-18 23:34:22-04

MANHATTAN — The Manhattan Black Lives Matter mural was vandalized twice on Saturday.

PIX11 News cameras observed Saturday night a coat of white paint splattered over both the mural and some of the black paint that had been used to defame the mural earlier Saturday.

No word yet on any arrests in this particular incident. The Saturday evening vandals were a case of someone who threw some white paint on the mural but it wasn’t smeared on and they didn’t go behind the barriers the city set up to protect the mural.

There was a "Bring Your Paint Can" rally advertised on Facebook, purportedly meant to act against the mural supposedly scheduled for 9 p.m., though PIX11 News cannot confirm if this was connected.

Our cameras witnessed two women being arrested after they'd splattered the mural outside Trump Tower in black paint earlier Saturday afternoon. They had broken through the barriers.

A woman was seen being handcuffed by a police officer, wearing a shirt that says "Jesus Matters" and demanding to be allowed to express herself.

Police confirm that two women were taken into custody who threw the black paint. An officer was injured slipping on paint while trying to arrest them. Charges are pending.

The women arrested, or one of their associates, appear to have filmed the entire incident themselves (including the officer who slipped and injured himself) and posted it in a 12-minute YouTube video. The video was titled "We are going to take our country back! By any means necessary!!!" The video contains some explicit language.

In the video, a woman being detained expressed support for President Trump and that New York should "re-fund the police," with one of the women protesting (who was not arrested) saying that "blue lives matter," "all lives matter" and that they did not agree with those wanting to defund the police.

This has been a pattern ever since the mural went up last week.

The second occurrence came Friday afternoon, just before 4 p.m., when video showed the yellow letters painted on the street outside Trump Tower splattered with blue paint.

A police spokesperson told PIX11 three people were arrested and one person was issued summons.

Juliet Germanotta, 39; Luis Martinez, 44; and D'Anna Morgan, 25, were arrested and charged with criminal mischief, police said. They were released and issued desk appearance tickets.

Another woman, 64, was issued a criminal court summons for illegal posting of fliers.

On Tuesday, police released images of a man pouring red paint on the mural Monday afternoon.

The mural was repaired Monday evening.

"To whoever vandalized our mural on 5th Avenue: nice try," Mayor Bill de Blasio tweeted. "The #BlackLivesMatter movement is more than words, and it can’t be undone."

The mural was painted last week outside of the president's namesake building and former residence.

"Painting 'Black Lives Matter' outside his home is a message to him that in fact Black lives do matter, that Black people built New York City and they've never been compensated for all they did," the mayor had said.

Dozens of cities across the country have painted similar murals, following in the footsteps of Washington, D.C.

Trump has slammed the mural, calling it a "symbol of hate" in a series of tweets earlier in July.

PIX11 News' Lauren Cook and Corey Crockett contributed.