Hundreds of cops gathered outside two Buffalo courthouses on Saturday after two fellow officers were charged with assault for pushing over an elderly protester.
Supportive cheers erupted from police and firefighters as the crowd opened a black umbrella and held up a black sheet to obscure television news cameras from getting footage of the suspects, The Sun reported.
The officers, Aaron Torgalski and Robert McCabe, were charged with assault in the second degree.
The two officers, from New York State, both pleaded not guilty.
The charge carries a maximum seven-year prison term.
The cops were arraigned in a virtual court hearing.
In response to the officers’ suspension on Friday, the entire Emergency Response Team resigned from the team, in solidarity.
The crowd of supporters today marched to the county courthouse, where WGRZ reported the two officers were being held to be “virtually arraigned” in city court.
Umbrellas were again opened up in front of television cameras, which captured images of hundreds of firefighters and police officers, some wearing shirts reading “We back the Blue.”
PROTESTER REMAINS IN INTENSIVE CARE UNIT
They are being investigated after a local radio station released video of the incident involving the protester, 75-year-old Martin Gugino.
The video showed Mr Gugino approaching a line of officers in riot gear.
One officer pushes him with a baton and a second one with his hand. The sound of a crack is heard and then blood trickles from his head.
He reportedly remains in a hospital intensive care unit (ICU).
Kait Munro, a spokeswoman for the Erie County District Attorney John Flynn, said: “I cannot confirm any details until an arraignment takes place.”
The western New York State city saw pockets of looting after dark like many cities across the United States.
It come as countless otherwise peaceful protests have been staged in the wake of the death of George Floyd, a black man who died in police custody in Minneapolis on May 25.
This article originally appeared on The Sun and was reproduced with permission.