Automotive plows protest in Manhattan, injuring a number of; Driver arrested

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© Reuters. An NYPD officer and people attend to a man after a vehicle was plowed into a crowd of about 50 people during a Friday afternoon protest in Manhattan, New York

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From Rich McKay

(Reuters) – A car plowed into a crowd of about 50 people during a protest that hit the streets of Manhattan Friday afternoon and injured several people, New York police and local news media reported.

The woman behind the wheel of the BMW sedan was arrested by law enforcement officers for questioning, the New York Police Department said. The incident occurred shortly after 4 p.m. on the corner of 39th Street and Third Avenue in the Murray Hill neighborhood of Midtown Manhattan, police said.

None of the injuries appeared to be life-threatening and the affected driver stayed at the scene, police said. Few other official details were immediately available.

Six people were hit by the car, according to local media reports, but it was unclear how many people were taken to hospitals.

Some reports on social media described a chaotic scene around a stopped car surrounded by protesters before the vehicle jerked into the crowd and some people and bikes fell. These reports could not be immediately confirmed by Reuters.

Police and several local media outlets said the protest was sponsored by the racial justice group Black Lives Matter.

A local Reuters photographer and at least one media company said the demonstration was in solidarity with nine undocumented immigrants who were on hunger strike in a New Jersey prison under custody of the US Immigration and Customs Service.

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