FACT CHECK: Viral Video Falsely Claims To Show Muslim Refugees Terrorizing New York
A video shared on X, the social media platform previously known as Twitter, purports to show Muslim refugees terrorizing New York.
Now the terror of refugee Muslims continues in New York as well. pic.twitter.com/qlAh2Hw0Tk
— Izlamic Terrorist (@raviagrawal3) August 5, 2023
The original video, published via Instagram, shows chaos that ensued after Twitch streamer Kai Cenat hosted a giveaway in Union Square on Aug. 4. A spokesperson for the New York Police Department (NYPD)’s Deputy Commissioner, Public Information denied the claim in an email to Check Your Fact.
Cenat addressed the riot that resulted from his giveaway for the first time during a Twitch livestream, saying that “sh-t is not cool,” according to the New York Post. Cenat had promised to give away PlayStation 5 consoles and gift cards, ABC News reported.
“US Now the terror of refugee Muslims continues in New York as well,” the X video, viewed over 50,000 times, purports. The video shows multiple members of the NYPD dodging objects that are being thrown at them.
The claim is false, however. The original video, published via Instagram, shows chaos that ensued after Cenat hosted a giveaway in Union Square on Aug. 4. The same video that was shared on X appears on the second slide of the Instagram post. A screenshot from safety alert app Citizen appears on the fourth slide and indicates Cenat’s giveaway sparked a riot.
“Mayhem broke out when Twitch streamer @kaicenat held a giveaway in Union Square today,” the Instagram post’s caption reads.
Likewise, Check Your Fact found no credible news reports indicating Muslim refugees had recently terrorized New York. The NYPD also did not repeat the claim on their website or verified social media accounts. (RELATED: Did Illinois Pass A Bill Allowing Illegal Immigrants To Apply For The Police Force?)
An NYPD Deputy Commissioner, Public Information spokesperson denied the claim in an email to Check Your Fact.
“On Friday, August 4th, 2023 at approximately 1310 hours, officers responded to a large disorderly group inside of Union Square Park in regards to a gathering by social media influencer Kai Cenat giving away Playstations,” the spokesperson indicated.
“Officers observed numerous individuals acting disorderly (throwing objects, destroying property, obstructing vehicular and pedestrian traffic, etc.). Additional officers were requested and a level four mobilization was activated to provide additional resources. Officers were able to disperse the crowd of individuals. Numerous arrests have been affected,” the spokesperson added.
In addition, the spokesperson said Cenat had been charged with riot, inciting to riot, and unlawful assembly. The spokesperson also directed us to a video of a press conference in which the NYPD addressed the situation involving Cenat.
Watch live as NYPD executives brief the media on an ongoing incident in Manhattan. https://t.co/IZfhsMwPiC
— NYPD NEWS (@NYPDnews) August 4, 2023
Additionally, Check Your Fact has contacted Cenat for comment and will update this piece accordingly if one is received.