Mass Chaos Unleashed in New York’s Union Square due to Online Influencer’s Giveaway Event, Leading to Disorder and Destruction

by Sophia Chen
fokus keyword Kai Cenat

Manhattan’s Union Square was crammed with thousands of people on Friday afternoon for a highly-anticipated giveaway event organized by a famous livestreamer, which unfortunately took a chaotic turn. Individuals in the mob began climbing onto vehicles, tossing chairs, and initiating fights, creating a tumultuous scene that overwhelmed the police trying to maintain order.

News helicopters overhead captured images of a disorderly, closely-packed mob moving across the streets, causing traffic disruptions and climbing various structures within the park. Teenagers were spotted shouting and smashing car windows with various objects, tossing paint cans, and triggering fire extinguishers. Some daring individuals were seen riding atop moving vehicles, only to be thrown off as the vehicles accelerated. Many also climbed or pounded on city buses.

By the late afternoon, a significant police presence managed to restore relative calm in most parts of the area. However, minor clashes continued, with young people overturning barricades and hurling items like bottles and a flowerpot at law enforcement officials. Police response involved ground tackles and pursuit of instigators.

According to NYPD Chief of Department, Jeffrey Maddrey, the plan is to charge the livestreamer, Kai Cenat, with inciting a riot, unlawful assembly, and potentially other crimes. As a result of the chaos, 65 people, including 30 minors, were taken into custody.

In the midst of the disorder, multiple individuals were hurt, with at least four needing ambulance transportation. Many people left the scene with visible injuries, and a number of vehicles, including police cars, suffered damages.

Cenat, who had been promoting the giveaway on his Instagram profile, attracts millions of followers on both YouTube and Twitch. His content ranges from pranks to daily life and comedy vlogs. Despite his online popularity, his public attempt at generosity resulted in widespread unrest.

Upon arriving at the event, which had been expected to include items such as livestreaming computers and new PlayStations, attendees found a turbulent scene. Reports suggest that disruptions began even before Cenat’s appearance.

Cenat was eventually escorted out of the crowd for his safety, as shown in videos on social media and news helicopters. He was later seen in a police vehicle.

The disorder escalated to the point of a city bus, filled with detained individuals, coming under attack, requiring additional police to protect it. Numerous individuals were spotted handcuffed and seated on sidewalks.

This level of chaos and danger was unprecedented, Maddrey noted. Several officers were injured, including a sergeant who suffered a hand fracture. Nearby businesses shut their doors amidst the chaos, while police used barricades and loudspeakers to disperse the crowd and declare the gathering unlawful.

Local business manager, Carina Treile, expressed her shock at the disorder, stating that usual free giveaways were organized and peaceful. She described the situation as frightening, especially when loud bangs caused panic and a stampede within the crowd.

Despite the unrest, Maddrey clarified the police are not against young people gathering or enjoying themselves. However, he stressed that such gatherings should not escalate to dangerous levels.

The report was a collaboration by Big Big News journalists Dave Collins, Robert Bumsted, David Martin, Ayesha Mir, Brooke Lansdale, Mallika Sen, Deepti Hajela, and Karen Matthews.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Union Square chaos

Who organized the event in Union Square that resulted in chaos?

The event was organized by popular livestreamer, Kai Cenat, who planned a large-scale giveaway for his followers.

What kind of charges is Kai Cenat facing?

Kai Cenat is facing multiple charges including inciting a riot, unlawful assembly, and potentially other crimes.

How many people were arrested during this event?

65 people, including 30 juveniles, were arrested during the chaos.

What items were being given away during the event?

Cenat’s giveaway was rumored to include items such as computers for livestreaming and new PlayStations, attracting a large number of attendees.

Were there any injuries reported?

Yes, several people were injured during the chaos. At least four individuals were taken away in ambulances, and many more were seen leaving the area with visible injuries. Additionally, three police officers were hurt.

How did the police manage to control the situation?

The police used force, including batons and metal barricades, to push back the crowd. They also made extensive use of loudspeakers to declare the gathering unlawful.

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ConcernedParent August 5, 2023 - 6:45 am

It’s just unacceptable. What were the parents of those juveniles? My kids won’t be watching Cenat anymore, that’s for sure!

SarahL August 5, 2023 - 7:33 am

so many injured people… this just sounds horrifying. Hope everyone’s okay.

CityLivin August 5, 2023 - 8:36 am

typical new york smh… things always seem to get outta hand here lol

TommyG August 5, 2023 - 3:02 pm

man, this is insane. what did they expect giving away free stuff in NY? Should have been better planned.

CenatFan21 August 5, 2023 - 6:42 pm

feel bad for Kai tho, his intentions were good but the crowd was just too wild.

PublicSpaceLover August 6, 2023 - 1:14 am

Union sq’s such a lovely place, hate to see it being misused like this. Next time, take your giveaways to a private venue, Cenat!

NYCPeace August 6, 2023 - 1:20 am

This is not the way to hold a gathering in Union Sq. Total disrespect to the public space.


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