Manhattan DA drops charges against Columbia protesters; community outraged

People are upset that the charges against many of the Columbia University protesters have been dropped.

Dozens of people brought together by the grassroots movement #EndJewishHatred gathered outside the offices of Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg Monday morning.

They say they are outraged that of 46 arrests made at the takeover of Hamilton Hall at Columbia University, 31 of the cases were dismissed, prosecutors say, due to a lack of evidence.  Recent graduate Yola Ashkenazie says it was frightening and dangerous. 

"They barricaded doors, smashed chairs, desks and windows, and terrified the Columbia community and held maintenance workers Mariano Torres and his colleague hostage, trapping them in the building," Ashkenazie said.

Columbia University Professor Shai Davidai added, "It's disgraceful because once again we Jews are left to fend for ourselves." 

Video obtained by FOX 5 NY from the NYPD showed the intense moments officers raided Hamilton Hall through a window on April 30.

RELATED: Columbia University protests: A timeline of how we got here

FOX 5 NY reached out to DA Bragg's office for comment. The spokesperson said there were also 9 cases dismissed against protestors at City College as well and gave us this statement:

"The Office is continuing to pursue cases from both campuses, including all assaults against police officers. There are ongoing school disciplinary proceedings for the students who had their case dismissed."

One of the rally leaders says the dismissal decision is sending the wrong message. 

"To not prosecute trespass claiming a lack of evidence, when the individuals were literally arrested in the location of their trespass, is on it's face ridiculous," Alan Minel, the Chairman of the Board Holocaust Museum and Tolerance Center of Long Island said. 

The NYPD conducted special training in preparation for the arrests, so that they could be done without any injuries to protestors, even when they were acting aggressively toward officers. Nearly 300 people were arrested. 

"We bring charges based on the facts, evidence, and what is provable in a court of law, and the Office continues to prosecute an array of cases stemming from campus protests," the spokesperson for DA Bragg's office said.

"District Attorney Bragg has set a strikingly dangerous precedent. He has given a free pass to those who violently and systematically bring chaos to our streets and our campus under the cover of a mask," Columbia graduate Eden Yadegar said.

The DA's spokesperson says they will continue to bring charges where possible. #EndJewishHatred leaders are pledging that they will be back again outside the Bragg's office.