New York state and city officials promised to launch an immediate investigation into the attacks on Friday by the Proud Boys, a far-right hate group with ties to neo-Nazis.
They did not say however their probe will look into inaction by New York City police, who failed to arrest members of the group as they brutally beat multiple men and called them by homophobic and anti-immigrant slurs.
New York Attorney General Barbara Underwood (D) said on Saturday that she was “disturbed and disgusted” by the attack by the “so-called ‘Proud Boys’.”
I'm disturbed and disgusted by last night's attacks involving the so-called "Proud Boys." Hate has no place in New York. This warrants immediate and thorough investigation by the NYPD to bring the perpetrators to justice. Anyone with information should call 1-800-577-TIPS.
— NY AG Underwood (@NewYorkStateAG) October 13, 2018
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) also denounced the attacks and demanded immediate prosecutions.
Authorities must review these videos immediately and make arrests and prosecute as appropriate. Hate cannot and will not be tolerated in New York.
Here's a message from a Queens boy to the so-called 'proud boys' – NY has zero tolerance for your bs. https://t.co/xGxIqeZumm
— Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) October 13, 2018
New York City Mayor Bill de Blassio (D) said his police department is “fully investigating’ the attacks and asked for the public’s help in providing video and information about the incident.
The NYPD is fully investigating last night’s attack involving the Proud Boys. If you know anything, the NYPD wants your help. Hate is never welcome in NYC and we will punish those responsible — whether they threw punches or incited violence — to the fullest extent of the law.
— Mayor Bill de Blasio (@NYCMayor) October 13, 2018
New York City Public Advocate Tish James (D) urged the District Attorney to pursue hate crimes charges against the “neo-fascist, white supremacist Proud Boys group” so that the city does “not become the next Charlottesville.”
Here is my statement following the violent attacks perpetrated by the “Proud Boys" white nationalist group in NYC last night: pic.twitter.com/wCFlgLt5Rt
— NYC Public Advocate (@NYCPA) October 13, 2018
The New York Police Department has not yet explained why three protesters were arrested for taking a backpack yet those Proud Boys involved in the attacks were permitted to leave without arrest — though several officers were present. But it did release a statement saying it is “currently reviewing additional video and other evidence” to determine if other arrests are warranted.