Fact Check: Boston Police NOT Caught Planting Bricks Amid Protest

Hoax Alert

  • by: Alan Duke
Fact Check: Boston Police NOT Caught Planting Bricks Amid Protest Not Planting

Were Boston police caught planting bricks amid the George Floyd death protest? No, that's not true: The bricks being removed by police officers from the back of a truck were collected by police from a damaged sidewalk on the campus of Northeastern University. The campus police were moving the "loose, upturned and broken bricks" because they were considered a safety hazard, the department said.

The claim originated in a video posted on Twitter by a student and then re-posted by others, including a video shared on June 2, 2020 by a Facebook page named "Unofficial: DNC " (archived here) with following text:

If you know how, save this to your phoneBoston Police planting bricks amid protestsPosted by @doingreallywell on Twitter

This is what the post looked like on Facebook at the time of writing:

Facebook screenshot

(Source: Facebook screenshot taken on Tue Jun 2 19:08:23 2020 UTC)

The video appears to have been recorded from an upper window of a building next to the campus police department. Two people from off camera are heard speculating about what the two officers below are doing with bricks. A male voice said:


What the f**k!

They're collecting all of those bricks so that the protesters can f**king use them, dude, that's what they're doing.

That, or they're doing that for undercover police officers that are getting involved in the protest so that they have an excuse to beat the shit out of people.

Contrary to the speculation, the Northeastern University Police Department posted a statement Tuesday explaining what was happening:

On Monday, June 1, while on a routine patrol of campus, two of our officers came across a damaged brick sidewalk at the corner of Tremont and Coventry streets that posed a safety hazard for pedestrians due to loose, upturned and broken bricks.
To prevent injuries to pedestrians, the officers collected the bricks and returned them to NUPD headquarters, where they immediately notified the City of Boston of a need for repair to the sidewalk and to request that the city collect the broken and damaged bricks.
The video circulating on social media of two Northeastern police officers unloading bricks from their vehicle behind our headquarters is from the series of events described here. Our priority is always the safety of our campus and community.

On Monday, June 1, while on a routine patrol of campus, two of our officers came across a damaged brick sidewalk at the...

Posted by Northeastern University Police Department on Tuesday, June 2, 2020

The person who initially posted the video via Twitter explained she removed the tweet because of harassment against her:

hi! those looking for a video I posted of some police officers (boston) handling bricks from a truck behind NUPD: I did take this down because I started to receive direct harassment

hi! those looking for a video I posted of some police officers (boston) handling bricks from a truck behind NUPD: I did take this down because I started to receive direct harassment

-- mintošŸ¦¦ (@chill_lesh) June 1, 2020

Although she appeared to acknowledge that the video did not show anything sinister on the part of campus cops, she posted another tweet indicating she was still suspicious of police.

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  Alan Duke

Editor-in-Chief Alan Duke co-founded Lead Stories after ending a 26-year career with CNN, where he mainly covered entertainment, current affairs and politics. Duke closely covered domestic terrorism cases for CNN, including the Oklahoma City federal building bombing, the UNABOMBER and search for Southeast bomber Eric Robert Rudolph. CNN moved Duke to Los Angeles in 2009 to cover the entertainment beat. Duke also co-hosted a daily podcast with former HLN host Nancy Grace, "Crime Stories with Nancy Grace" and hosted the podcast series "Stan Lee's World: His Real Life Battle with Heroes & Villains." You'll also see Duke in many news documentaries, including on the Reelz channel, CNN and HLN.

Read more about or contact Alan Duke

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