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Protester arrested after Brooklyn Bridge clash; police expect more arrests

N.Y. police arrest one protester in Brooklyn Bridge clash that left an officer with a broken nose

New York police say that they have arrested one of the seven people sought in connection with a Saturday altercation that left one officer with a broken nose during protests on the Brooklyn Bridge, and expect to arrest "several others" in the coming days.

Robert Murray, 43, of Brooklyn turned himself in to a Chinatown precinct Thursday morning, police announced at a news conference.

Murray faces two felony counts of assaulting a police officer, one count of resisting arrest, one count of inciting a riot and one count of obstruction of governmental administration, police said.

NYPD Deputy Chief William Aubry identified Murray as a local union organizer.

Police Commissioner William J. Bratton announced Thursday that investigators were more than doubling the reward for information leading to the arrest of the remaining six individuals to $25,000. Police have distributed fliers with photos of the people, asking the public for help in identifying them.

Aubry said police had received "numerous calls" from the public providing information and video evidence of the incident, which occurred Saturday night during a mass protest on the Brooklyn Bridge that drew as many as 25,000 people. The event was part of a string of demonstrations nationwide highlighting the deaths of black men at the hands of law enforcement officers.

During the protest, police say, NYPD Lts. Philip Chan and Patrick Sullivan were trying to arrest 29-year-old Eric Linsker, who they said was trying to throw a large trash can off the bridge railing onto the road below.

According to police, that's when four men and three women tried to intervene. Video of the clash posted on YouTube shows several people trying to grab two police officers and pull them off the protester.

Aubry says Murray can be seen in video of the incident, jumping into and out of the confrontation and pulling one of the officers to the ground as the officer attempts to arrest Linsker. Linsker was later arrested and charged in connection with the incident, police said.

Police said Murray also punched Chan twice, hard enough to break his nose.

"His acts were violent, right up there with some of the most violent acts I've seen," Aubry told reporters Thursday.

Bratton promised this week to fully investigate the alleged assault, saying the department does not take attacks on its officers lightly.

"We will make every effort, and I guarantee we will get every one of those seven individuals. Every one," Bratton said Thursday.

For more breaking news, follow me @cmaiduc on Twitter.

Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times

UPDATES

2:33 p.m.: This article was updated to include additional details from the NYPD about Robert Murray's arrest and charges against him.

The first version of this article was published at 12:34 p.m.

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