A woman was charged with the attempted murder of New York City Police Department officers for allegedly hurling a Molotov cocktail at a marked police van that was occupied, officials said.
Samantha Shader, 27, of Catskill, New York, which is about 130 miles north of New York City, is accused of tossing the firebomb into the rear window of a van at Eastern Parkway and Washington Ave. in Brooklyn, officials told the New York Post and other news outlets.
The incident took place during sometimes violent protests against the death of George Floyd, a black man who died in police custody in Minneapolis. Dozens of cities have seen similar events unfold.
Shader is also accused of biting an officer’s leg as she was being arrested, authorities remarked.
The woman now faces four counts of attempted murder of a police officer, attempted arson, assault, criminal possession of a weapon, and reckless endangerment, said officials.
Officials told a local NBC affiliate that Shader waived her Miranda rights and admitted to throwing the Molotov cocktail.
Her sister, Darian, 21, was arrested after she allegedly attempted to interfere with her sister’s arrest. She faces obstruction of governmental administration and resisting arrest charges, officials told the paper.
“In other incidents, cops were hit with bricks, brass knuckles, and bottles,” Paul DiGiacomo, head of the Detectives Endowment Association, wrote, promising that “in addition to ensuring the strongest possible criminal charges are filed against these vicious criminals, we will be bringing civil actions against any person who harms a detective.”
“They are terrorists who tried to murder NYC police officers,” Police Benevolent Association President Patrick Lynch said. “Every leader in this city should be speaking up to condemn these attacks and working with us to prevent more violence. Sadly, they are either silent or working against us.”
In addition, Colinford Mattis, 32, and Urooj Rahman, 31, of Brooklyn, were charged with possessing explosive device components after Rahman allegedly tossed an incendiary device at an NYPD police vehicle. He fled with Mattis, officials told NBC4.
According to a federal complaint on the arrest of Rahman and Mattis, “During the arrest, officers observed in plain view several precursor items to build a Molotov cocktail, including a lighter, a bottle filled with toilet paper and a liquid suspected to be gasoline in the vicinity of the passenger seat and a gasoline tank in the rear of the vehicle.”
On Saturday, more than 300 people were arrested across the city, said Mayor Bill de Blasio, who said it was a “tense” night for officers.
Anyone who tries to “create violence” will not be tolerated, he said. “You will get arrested,” the mayor added.