Top NYPD Cop Appears to Pepper Spray Himself During Pro-Palestine Protest

Alex Kent/Getty Images
Alex Kent/Getty Images

A high-ranking NYPD officer got an unfortunate taste of his own medicine on Saturday when he accidentally caught a face full of pepper spray while trying to break up a pro-Palestinian demonstration on the Manhattan Bridge.

Video posted to social media appeared to show Assistant Police Chief James McCarthy spraying the chemical irritant into his own face while his officers manhandled protesters on the bridge.

While the junior officers in helmets and other body armor got physical with the struggling protesters, McCarthy could be seen reaching for his pepper spray to try and neutralize them.

Instead, he appeared to unleash a full stream of the irritant into his own face.

Later images and video from the scene showed McCarthy having his eyes flushed with the help of other officers, who braced him as he squinted and cringed from the burning substance. His red, irritated eyes could clearly be seen in the images.

Police were quoted by CBS News as saying “someone” pepper sprayed the assistant chief, although bystander video from the bridge appeared to show him spraying himself.

The NYPD did not immediately respond to The Daily Beast’s requests for comment.

It was unclear whether McCarthy needed medical treatment or if he was escorted from the scene for injury.

More than 100 people were arrested from the Manhattan Bridge protest Saturday, NYPD Deputy Commissioner of Operations Kaz Daughtry said on X.

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