NEW YORK (PIX11) – At least 66 people were arrested Friday while attending an unauthorized gathering at Union Square Plaza, hosted by Twitch star Kai Cenat, that turned violent, police said on Saturday.
On Thursday, Cenat tweeted that he would be heading to Union Square Park at 4 p.m. for a PlayStation giveaway. The crowd quickly grew as word of the event spread on social media.
A massive crowd estimated to be in the thousands gathered at Union Square Park – prompting police to respond in riot gear as tensions soared, objects were hurled and property was damaged.
“I don’t think people realize the level of discipline that we showed to take a very dangerous, volatile situation and to be able to bring it to a level of resolve without any loss of life or any substantial damage to property and without young people harming themselves,” Mayor Eric Adams said in a follow-up briefing on Saturday.
Police arrested 65 people, the majority of them juveniles, and 21-year-old Cenat. The Twitch and YouTube streamer, who has over 5 million followers across streaming and social media platforms, was released from police custody early Saturday.
Cenat, who is a resident of New York, was charged with inciting a riot, rioting, and unlawful assembly, the NYPD said. He was issued a desk appearance ticket and is expected back in court on Aug. 18, officials said.
This story comprises reporting from The Associated Press, and PIX11 News reporters Finn Hoogensen and Magee Hickey.