A Queens teenager was arrested on Monday evening for allegedly driving into a crowd of protesters on bicycles in Manhattan over the weekend, according to police and prosecutors.
Victor Kent, 18, of Forest Hills, was taken into custody just before 8 p.m. Monday for assault, issued a desk appearance ticket, and released, according to the NYPD and Manhattan District Attorney's office. He's due in court December 30th.
On Saturday night, the driver—allegedly Kent—was seen plowing through protesters who were biking down Fifth Avenue during a demonstration against police violence organized by Street Riders NYC. Video shows the driver seemingly accelerating through the cyclists, before screeching his tires, then driving away.
Two people were injured, including a college student biking in the protest with her father on Saturday night.
Just before the driver sped through protesters, an altercation occurred in which a protest organizer said he hurled insults and threatened demonstrators and volunteers. One video shows the moment when someone—who protesters allege was a passenger—yell out, "hit him with the car."
"Our office is thoroughly investigating this incident," Manhattan District Attorney spokesperson Danny Frost said of Saturday night's attack.
On September 2nd, Kent was arrested on robbery charges in Brooklyn, court records show.
According to a criminal complaint and court records, Kent allegedly stole a pair of sneakers from someone who had met up with Kent and another person in order to sell them on July 16th. A passenger in the car told Kent to drive away once obtaining the sneakers, upon which Kent is accused of running over the sneaker seller's foot and injuring him with scratches after he grabbed the window of the car and was dragged, the criminal complaint says.
Kent was held for about a week until he posted $10,000 bail, court records show. A hearing for that case is slated for March 10th.
Street Riders NYC co-founder, Peter Kerre, called it "unbelievable" that Kent had already been released from custody after getting a DAT for allegedly driving into protesters.
"That is outrageous," Kerre said. "What if he's a potential threat? What if he might go looking for the victims? That's a concern now, for me."
"I'm very disappointed to hear that," Kerre added, especially since the previous allegation also involved injuring someone with a car. "I feel like as someone who put the protest together, I have to make sure that I will go to them and see this through the very end."
After the college student, Allison, was hit, she suffered a heel injury and scratches, and underwent a series of tests to ensure she didn't suffer other injuries, she said in an Instagram live video with Street Riders NYC.
"I do think that there has to be some systemic change—hopefully government officials, City Council, DA, Mayor, Governor see this incident and make change," she said, adding it has happened before, like when a driver slammed into a crowd of protesters in Times Square, but faced no charges. "I really do hope this case brings light to what has happened."