De Blasio defends NYPD decision to end standoff with BLM protester
The Black Lives Matter demonstrator who forced the NYPD to retreat when they tried to arrest him for allegedly assaulting a cop staged a dramatic police surrender Saturday, with a few hundred supporters marching him to a Midtown police precinct.
Protester Derrick Ingram, 28, who was released without bail, now faces up to seven years prison on felony cop-assault charges for allegedy shouting in an officer’s ear with a high-powered bullhorn.
The NYPD’s decision to leave Ingram’s Hells Kitchen street after a six-hour standoff Friday sparked outrage from police union reps, who insisted the move capitulated to mob rule.
Mayor de Blasio supported Shea’s stand-down order in a statement Saturday.
“Commissioner Shea made the right decision to call off the operation,” de Blasio said. “Assaulting an officer is unacceptable and will always lead to consequences, but arrests must be made properly.”
Ingram heads a Black Lives Matter protest group that bills itself on its Instagram page as “a collective of non-violent activists,” and he has insisted he did nothing wrong.
“I can’t talk a lot about exactly what happened,” the soft-spoken Ingram said Saturday morning, addressing a crowd of supporters at an impromptu Bryant Park rally before the group marched to the precinct on West 54th Street.
“I just want to say I’m thankful for all the love and support and kind words and the amazing outreach and kindness I received in the last 24 hours,” Ingram said.
“I’m highly traumatized,” he insisted, “from everything, from the drones, to the dogs, to the lies that have been told by the NYPD, and I’m ready to make a change.
“I think we should focus our efforts on getting [NYPD] Commissioner [Dermot] Shea out of office.”
Ingram’s supporters gloated at their ability to turn back New York’s Finest.
“Yesterday we stood up to the biggest goddamn gang in this nation, and we won. They waved their white flag. They took their illegal occupation, and they backed it down the street,” a demonstrator told the crowd at Bryant Park over a loudspeaker.
Officers had converged on Ingram’s house Friday with police dogs, a couple dozen vehicles, and a force of dozens in tactical gear — but without a warrant, officials have conceeded. Ingram, who was livestreaming through his window while consulting with his lawyers, refused to leave the apartment, and eventually 100 protesters turned up.
“What did I do? I was born black, that’s what I did,” he lamented in his livestream.
Officials said at a June 14 Midtown protest, he “placed a megaphone directly against the officer’s ear and yelled” after the cop tried to stop him from entering a “frozen zone,” according to a police report.
Photos of the battery-powered bullhorn show it was black with a “DEFUND THE POLICE” sticker slapped on its side.
The officer suffered ear damage that affected her balance, sources told The Post.
Cops were unable to identify Ingram after the June 14 protest — but two weeks ago, he repeated the dangerous stunt during a protest in Bayside, and that’s when they figured out who he was, sources alleged to The Post.
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