What began as a giveaway morphed into a riot in New York City on Friday.
Cenat had summoned his followers to Union Square in Manhattan where he would hold a giveaway to include PlayStation consoles and gift cards.
Police said the crowd swelled to a “couple thousand people.”
Long before the event was to begin, the crowd turned violent, with police and other members of the crowd being hit with bottles.
“Right now, a huge riot is currently happening at Union Square Park in Manhattan, New York. Hundreds of young teens and adults have gathered after a Twitch live streamer Influencer named Kai Canat announced a giveaway. Many people are reportedly injured, and there are reports of crowds attacking NYPD officers and causing damage to vehicles and property. Authorities are urging everyone to stay away from the area,” the social media account RawsAlert tweeted.
🚨#UPDATE: Police are currently working to disperse the crowds of people as some are throwing objects at officers as other individuals in the crowd also tore down barricades and entered a construction area. According to ABC News, Kai Cenat, the Twitch streamer and influencer, had… pic.twitter.com/cD9VI3tiPz
— R A W S A L E R T S (@rawsalerts) August 4, 2023
“Police are currently working to disperse the crowds of people as some are throwing objects at officers as other individuals in the crowd also tore down barricades and entered a construction area. According to ABC News, Kai Cenat, the Twitch streamer and influencer, had made a big announcement about a video game console giveaway,” the account posted in a follow-up message.
Police took Cenat into custody and were considering filing charges of incitement.
NYPD Chief of Department Jeff Maddrey said the police “became aware at about 1:30 p.m of a crowd forming in Union Square. It was quickly determined that an influencer was posting on social media about showing up to Union Square. He was encouraging all of his followers to come to the park.”
Try that in a small town… https://t.co/VYsyXu35Xx
— End Wokeness (@EndWokeness) August 4, 2023
“The crowd was swarmed when the influencer finally arrived at the park. Individuals in the park began to commit acts of violence towards the police and the public,” he said.
Maddrey said that young rioters threw fireworks at police and others at the square.
“There was a lot of people, it was uncontrolled. They were doing a whole lot of things, but they were hurting each other as they were doing it,” he said.
Violent mobs wrecking havoc in Union Square Park in NYC rn: pic.twitter.com/Hr8wTC5yXK
— Libs of TikTok (@libsoftiktok) August 4, 2023
Maddrey said some officers were injured trying to control the crowd.
“It was a very dangerous situation,” Maddrey said. “We were in there, we were crushed, we were pushed.”
Riot declared in Union Square, NYC.
Fireworks and chaos. Brave police officers putting their lives on the line so some idiot Twitch streamer can make money. https://t.co/V3x0gn9lLP
— Citizen Free Press (@CitizenFreePres) August 4, 2023
Police said crowds from the event caused traffic snarls in Manhattan, stomped on cars and even climbed on top of buses. An estimated 40 people were arrested during the incident, WNBC reported.
WNBC said Cenat has streamed content on Twitch since 2018 and in February became Twitch’s top streamer of all time with more than 100,000 subscribers.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.
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