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6 Charged in NYC Youth March Melee

November 18, 1998

NEW YORK (AP) _ Six people have been indicted for a melee that broke out after New York’s Million Youth March.

Some black leaders accused police of sparking scuffles Sept. 5 by rushing a stage to shut down the four-hour rally the minute it was to end. The rally in Harlem was attended by about 50,000.

After rushing the stage, police ducked bottles and debris thrown at them and used pepper spray on the crowd. Nearly 30 people suffered minor injuries, including 16 police officers. One person was arrested.

Organizer Khalid Abdul Muhammad is not among those charged Tuesday.

Mayor Rudolph Giuliani and Police Commissioner Howard Safir had blamed Muhammad for the problems, accusing him of inflammatory, racist rhetoric and inciting the crowd to attack police.

The indictment charges a 51-year-old man with misdemeanor attempted assault for allegedly punching a police officer.

Five unidentified men, each referred to as ``John Doe″ and an article of clothing they were wearing, were indicted after the grand jury saw them in a videotape.

The five were charged with reckless endangerment for throwing things. One was also charged with felony attempted assault. Police are trying to identify and find the five.

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