Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross wasn’t happy about a protest planned for Friday night in support of a man accused of shooting six cops earlier this week — but told KYW-TV that police will be present.
‘Sadly, we do have to be there’
“Sadly, we do have to be there,” Ross added to the station. “I don’t understand it. There’s certain marches I do understand; this is definitely not one of them.”
Organizers told the station they expect between 200 and 300 people to attend the North Philadelphia protest on behalf of Maurice Hill, who finally surrendered to police after nearly a seven-hour standoff Wednesday in the city’s Nicetown-Tioga section.
All six officers who were shot sustained injuries that weren’t life threatening and were released from the hospital the same day, KYW reported.
Hill is in jail while he waits to be arraigned, KYW said, adding that Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner said he’ll likely face charges that include attempted murder and aggravated assault.
“There will be a lot of charges,” Krasner added to the station. “These are more than enough charges so that Mr. Maurice Hill may never exit jail.”
What might be of concern to cops about the planned protest?
A crowd of bystanders mocked and taunted police at the scene of the shooting — and some of the behavior was captured on video, which showed people shoving and confronting cops as they were dealing with a hostage situation.
KYW reporter Alexandria Hoff said bystanders harassed her, too, while she was documenting the crowd harassing cops.
Hoff said a group of about 12 people refused to comply with police directives to move off the street to the sidewalk for their safety, and some were “yelling disparaging things” while others were “laughing at those comments in the officer’s faces.”
She also described the harassment she faced, saying she “was forced to walk off after a woman involved with the taunting yelled repeatedly for me and the camera to ‘get the f*** out of here.'”