James O'Brien 10am - 1pm
Black Lives Matter mural outside Trump Tower defaced three times in less than a week
19 July 2020, 10:04
A Black Lives Matter mural painted on the street outside Trump Tower has been defaced three times in less than a week.
In the latest incident, two women were arrested around 3pm on Saturday after pouring black paint on the block-long mural outside the building on Manhattan's chic Fifth Avenue.
Video showed police officers surrounding one of the women as she rubbed the paint on the mural's bright yellow letters and screamed: "They don't care about black lives" and "Refund the police".
One of the officers slipped on the paint and fell to the ground, sustaining injuries to his head and arm, police said.
The city's largest police union, the Police Benevolent Association, tweeted: "Thankfully our brother will be OK, but this nonsense needs to stop. Our city is in crisis. Paint on the street helps no one."
Saturday's vandalism took place less than 24 hours after three people were caught on surveillance video smearing blue paint on the mural, police said.
Officers found the trio nearby a short time later with blue paint on their hands and clothing, police said.
According to the video of the incident, one of them was wearing an "All Lives Matter" shirt as well as other apparel indicating support for US president Donald Trump.
They were arrested, charged with criminal mischief and released with a order to appear in court at a later date.
Meanwhile, police are continuing to look for a man in black shorts and a dark blue T-shirt who was seen splashing red paint on the mural around 12pm on Monday.
The words Black Lives Matter have been painted on streets in New York and elsewhere in recent weeks to show support for the movement demanding justice and reforms after the recent police killings of George Floyd and other black people.