[Image via @visionsofmatty]
This afternoon, the Confederate and Israeli flags were removed from the windows of the top-floor apartment at 403 E. Eighth St.
As we first reported yesterday, workers hung a tarp from the roof to cover the flags from view on the street below.
It's unknown exactly how long the flags had been in the windows (five months to a year, per different media accounts) in the corner building at Avenue D. However, it wasn't until after last weekend's deadly white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va., when people started taking notice. (DNAinfo reported yesterday that a pair of the German Naval flags emblazoned with the iron cross were in the windows for roughly a decade before they were replaced by the Confederate flags some time last year.)
Police have been on the scene since a man threw rocks at the windows on Wednesday morning. There is also an unconfirmed report of an the NYPD arresting a man last night for throwing a rock at the windows.
Previous media accounts reported that both the building's property manager and the NYPD had asked the tenant, a 43-year-old male who has lived here for 12 years, to remove the flags.
Will update when more information becomes available about what transpired here today.
Updated 3:15 p.m.
DNAinfo has more on last night's arrest.
Darren Keen, 34, yelled and broke a window at 403 E. 8th St. around 8:40 p.m. before fleeing, according to the NYPD. He was arrested roughly 30 minutes later.
Keen was charged with criminal mischief, given a desk appearance ticket and released.
Updated 8 p.m.
NY1 was actually first to report on Keen's arrest last night.
Police say officers heard the sound of broken glass at a building on East 8th Street near Avenue D.
When they went to investigate, the NYPD says they found a trail of blood leading to the next building and up to Keen's apartment.
Police say Keen admitted to breaking a window and was taken into custody.
He spoke exclusively with NY1 hours earlier and told us he was upset about the flags.
"Everything to make that guy's message go away is good. And I'm going right now to the hardware store and I'm going to pull those tarps up and I'm going to paint a giant Wu-Tang logo on those tarps right now," he said.
It's still not clear who actually removed the flags. Keen is taking credit for it via an Instragram post (breaking the window gave reason for the police to enter, and they took down the flags). Per an updated DNAinfo post: "An NYPD spokesman denied that police entered the apartment and took the flags down, saying that it was freedom of speech."
Other sources have claimed that the building's management entered the apartment and removed the flags. There hasn't been any report of where the tenant is.
Previously on EV Grieve:
Report: Anger over Confederate flags on 8th Street and Avenue D
[Updated] Workers place tarp over flags on 8th Street and Avenue D