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Black Lives Matter Demonstrations Stop Traffic On George Washington Bridge Before Protesters Clash With Police In Washington Heights

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- Demonstrations briefly stopped traffic on the George Washington Bridge on Saturday before protesters ended up outside of the NYPD's 34th Precinct in Washington Heights.

The scene was tense and sometimes hostile as the situation quickly escalated between police and protesters, CBS2's Kiran Dhillon reported.

More than 100 Black Lives Matter protesters were in front of the precinct around 8 p.m. when they say they were confronted by police.

CBS2 overheard police on a loud speaker warning of arrests before officers in riot gear pushed protesters back, yelling, "Move back, move back."

Eventually, the group dispersed, but people were taken into custody.


Several protesters say the demonstrations started in the Bronx and New Jersey earlier in the day Saturday.

Both groups met on the George Washington Bridge, where they blocked traffic on the upper level in both directions for about 40 minutes.

They then gathered at the 34th Precinct.

"They were giving some speeches and so forth, and then the cops started pushing in and said that we had to be on the sidewalks, and then they just kind of bum-rushed everybody. And they made, like, I saw at least, like, five arrests. They had people on the ground," one protester said. "They forcefully made us disperse. It wasn't, 'You guys have to leave.' It was a forceful dispersion. ... You're having a peaceful protest and the cops get the billy clubs, they have riot gear, and there was no riot."

"We're just peaceful protesting here and they're more angry that we're here rather than the reason that we are here. And it's just always the same thing. It's like what else can we do? We sign these petitions, we do all of this, and it's still the same bull crap," another protester said.

Police say six people were taken into custody. They were charged with disorderly conduct and issued summonses.

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