The New York Police Department held a funeral this past Friday for 22-year-old detective Jason Rivera after he was killed in the line of duty while responding to a domestic disturbance call in Harlem. Another officer, Wilbert Mora, was also killed in the shootout. The suspect, Lashawn McNeil, was shot at the scene and also later died.
The streets surrounding St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Midtown Manhattan were flooded with thousands of police officers who came to pay their respects to the fallen officer. This led actress Jacqueline Guzman to record a now-deleted TikTok video to her account “VinylBoobs” in which she reacted to the massive street closures.
In the video, Guzman can be seen walking down an empty street that has been barricaded off.
“We do not need to shut down most of lower Manhattan because one cop died for probably doing his job incorrectly. They kill people who are under 22 every single day for no good reason and we don’t shut down the city for them,” Guzman said in the 31-second video.
She added, “Like, this is f****** ridiculous. This is f****** ridiculous. What if somebody is having a heart attack in this area? Nobody can get to them because it’s all blocked off for one f****** cop.”
The video quickly went viral and received heavy backlash online. Users were quick to identify Guzman as the woman in the video.
Face to Face Films, the independent film and theater production company Guzman belonged to, was quick to cut ties with Guzman. In a statement posted to Instagram, the company wrote, “Face to Face Films has just been made aware of an insensitive video involving one of our members, Jacqueline Guzman. Face to Face Films does not support nor can condone these comments made about fallen Officer Rivera. As a result, she is no longer a member of our company.”
According to her biography on the Face to Face Films website, which has also been deleted, “Jacqueline Guzman is a Cuban American actress based in NYC, originally from Hialeah, Florida. Jacqueline discovered her passion for acting in high school when she was pressured by her friends to audition for Almost, Maine. This was a life-changing experience for her, she had found a place where she could be free, vulnerable, and creative.”
In an interview with The New York Post, New York City Police Benevolent Association President Patrick Lynch said, “New Yorkers turned out by the thousands yesterday to help us honor our fallen brother. One person spreading hate cannot erase that. This kind of garbage has polluted the conversation for far too long. We need the New Yorkers who are standing with us to speak up and push back.”
A Brooklyn officer said the video was “totally disrespectful, not only to the NYPD but to all New York residents and all humans. If this is the only way she can get publicity, I feel very sorry for her.”
Guzman has deactivated her social media accounts and has yet to comment on the situation.