A New York City man was arrested Saturday after he clashed with a police officer during a dispute with anti-Drag Story Hour protesters at a public library, according to police and a local report.
Chase Catapano, 28, was at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Library in midtown Manhattan during a scheduled protest inside the library when a verbal dispute erupted between him and protesters, police said.
Video of the incident posted on Twitter shows a man yelling “You’re a f—ing disgrace, a f—ing disgrace” at protesters. The protesters can be heard shouting insults back at the man.
An on-duty NYPD Community Affairs detective in plain clothes identified himself and tried to break up the dispute, police said.
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But Catapano allegedly became aggressive and slapped the detective’s hand.
“You better watch who you’re touching, that’s an officer!” one protester yells in the video. “That’s an officer, fool!”
Police said Catapano resisted as he was placed under arrest. The detective was not injured.
Catapano’s father told the New York Daily News that his son often uses the computers at the public library and would not have responded well to any disruptions because of his bipolar disorder.
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“He doesn’t think he needs medication, which by the way is part of the disease,” the father said. “So sometimes I would stay on the phone with him for hours and hours and hours. And he would talk himself out of being angry, you just talk himself out and relax. He is not a bad kid.”
Police told the paper that a homeless shelter was listed as Catapano’s address.
Catapano was charged with obstructing governmental administration, attempted assault, menacing, disorderly conduct and harassment.
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