Plain clothes officers threw 18-year-old Nikki Stone, a trans woman, into an unmarked van while she was gathering with others to protest police brutality in New York City.
WABC reports that she was charged with vandalism and criminal mischief, and was released after being held in custody for five hours.
The Washington Post notes “protesters who witnessed the incident described it as a ‘kidnapping,’ while a number of New York’s elected officials, including Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), decried the officers’ actions and demanded further explanations from the NYPD.”
The NYPD defended its unmarked police and van on Twitter.
In regard to a video on social media that took place at 2 Ave & 25 St, a woman taken into custody in an unmarked van was wanted for damaging police cameras during 5 separate criminal incidents in & around City Hall Park. The arresting officers were assaulted with rocks & bottles. pic.twitter.com/2jGD3DT3eV— NYPD NEWS (@NYPDnews) July 29, 2020
However, three people at the scene told the Gothamist that the police claims were not true.
Clara Kraebber, a 20-year-old Oxford student, contradicted the claim by the police.
None of that happened whatsoever. We literally turned the corner and were met with a line of police who attacked us without warning.
Kraebber also said the cops used pepper spray “seemingly at random” and “were trying to make it painful to be there.”