Young Cyclists Wanted for Striking NYC Vehicle With Bikes, Breaking Windshield and Fleeing

A group of young people intentionally damaged a New York City driver's vehicle while cycling through midtown Manhattan on Tuesday.

All of the individuals had left the scene when the driver subsequently filed a police report. Law enforcement had not identified them, or determined their current whereabouts, about 24 hours later.

Multiple videos recorded during the incident continued to draw attention on Twitter Wednesday afternoon, with one garnering 1 million views.

Cellphone camera footage shows a cluster of individuals, whom witnesses described as teenagers, surrounding an SUV near Madison Square Park. While several approach the vehicle to strike its exterior with BMX bicycles or tread on top of the car itself, others gathered in the vicinity are heard cheering. Near the most-viewed video's end, one person seemingly associated with the group of cyclists kicks the vehicle's windshield after jumping onto its hood. The windshield was partially shattered.

Some social media users said they observed events that occurred before the incident was caught on video. One, whose Twitter account was no longer publicly accessible on Wednesday afternoon, claimed some of the young cyclists latched on to the vehicle as it drove toward the intersection of Fifth Avenue and 21st Street. The same social media user reportedly noted that one cyclist suffered a "bloody lip" and that this injury prompted the retaliation seen in the recorded footage.

Another social media user, also claiming to have witnessed the incident, refuted that recollection, saying "the driver made a threatening move towards the kids because they were taking up the lines, slowing them down."

The New York City Police Department released a brief advisory notice regarding the incident, noting that individuals responsible for damaging the vehicle were "wanted for criminal mischief." An NYPD spokesperson told Newsweek on Wednesday afternoon the department's investigation is ongoing and the details acquired so far were preliminary.

The spokesperson confirmed that a 36-year-old man was operating the vehicle that was damaged, identified as a 2019 BMW, and said he reported the incident to the NYPD. The man estimated that damages to his car amounted to $250, according to the spokesperson. When officers arrived at the Manhattan intersection, the driver recalled stopping near the cross streets "to allow a large group of bicyclists to pass."

New York City, NYPD, Police
A New York Police Department car near the Saks Fifth Avenue department store in midtown Manhattan on December 4. The department is investigating a Tuesday incident in which a group of young cyclists intentionally damaged a vehicle at a Manhattan intersection. John Lamparski/Getty

"The victim further states that the bicyclists jumped onto the hood and windshield of his vehicle, causing approximately $250 worth of damages to his car," an official narrative, produced by the NYPD following Tuesday's police report, read. "The individuals fled the location on bicycles to parts unknown. The victim refused medical attention on scene."

The police spokesperson was unable to confirm that an older woman was also inside the vehicle, as a few Twitter users claimed. In a number of tweets shared Tuesday, an individual who identified himself as the driver said his mother was a passenger in the car during the incident.

The NYPD asks anyone with additional information about the cyclists to report it to the department by calling 1-800-577-TIPS.