NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The Black Lives Matter mural in front of Trump Tower in Midtown was vandalized twice on Saturday, and a police officer was injured trying to stop a protester from throwing black paint.
Saturday afternoon, a woman was seen on video pouring black paint on the mural and calling for the city to “re-fund” the police.
“Black lives matter, but you want to defund the police for Black people. You’re lying,” she said.
The scene turned chaotic as police officers tried to arrest the woman, but she apparently resisted, causing one officer to fall hard to the concrete on Fifth Avenue, injuring his shoulder and writhing in pain.
Witnesses watched the frenzy unfold.
“It seemed like he slipped on the wet paint,” one man told CBS2’s Nick Caloway. “He looked like he was in pain. He was lying down. They took him away in an ambulance.”
It took several minutes for other officers to get the woman, caked in black paint, into custody.
A second woman was also arrested in connection to the incident.
Police say 29-year-old Bevelyn Beatty and 39-year-old Edmee Chavannes, both from Staten Island, were charged with criminal mischief. They were given desk appearance tickets and released.
CBS2 has been told the injured officer was taken to Bellevue Hospital with non-serious injuries.
Hours later, CBS2’s camera caught a man in a red hat throwing what appeared to be paint at the mural.
He tried to run but was taken into police custody almost immediately, handcuffed and placed in the back of the cop’s SUV.
Police say 42-year-old Wesley Davis, of Hempstead, was charge with criminal mischief and received a desk appearance ticket.
It’s the fourth time the mural has been vandalized this week.
On Friday, two women, one wearing an “All Lives Matter” shirt, poured blue paint on the mural. The two women and a man were arrested for that incident.
Police are still searching for the man who splattered red paint on the mural on Monday.
Some New Yorkers have expressed concerns and had questions about the vandalism.
“I think it’s sad. I think the world needs more peace and love. Unfortunately, everyone is angry,” Manhattan resident Eileen Kimball said.
“I’m surprised they weren’t guarding it. How come the cops weren’t guarding it?” Manhattan resident Luke Dohner said.
Mayor Bill de Blasio helped paint the mural on Fifth Avenue just over a week ago, saying it was a message to President Donald Trump.
The mayor’s office called the vandalism unacceptable, adding that it will be fixed.
CBS2 has asked police whether they will be stepping up patrols at the mural, but we did not get an answer.
It will be up to the Department of Transportation to clean up the mess and fix the mural.