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CNN journalist arrested live on air

By Mirror | May 29th 2020 at 17:59:10 GMT +0300

CNN reporter Omar Jimenez is handcuffed by officers from Minnesota State Patrol.
A CNN crew was arrested on live TV by a riot squad while covering the protests over the police death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

Incredible footage shows armed officers from the Minnesota State Patrol handcuffing reporter Omar Jimenez after they told him to move and he calmly asked them where he should stand.

The black reporter had just shown a protester being arrested close to a police station that was torched overnight when about half a dozen white officers surrounded him.

His white colleague, reporter Josh Campbell, was covering the same protest and said he was treated well by police and not arrested.

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Mr Jimenez was detained with his producer Bill Kirkos, who is white, and camera operator Leonel Mendez as fires burned around them in a scene of carnage in the US city.

The crew was released about an hour later after Governor Tim Walz intervened and apologised to CNN president Jeff Zucker.

After his release Mr Jiminez said he had not been apologised to.

He said on CNN: "(It) gave me a little bit of comfort knowing that you guys saw what was happening, I was living what was happening and the country was seeing what was happening unfold in real-time before their eyes.

"As we were walking away, and you were taking in the entire neighborhood that had been decimated from the passion of the protesters and unfortunately some of the rioting and looting that we had seen, it did cross my mind that, what is really happening here?"

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A Minnesota State Patrol spokesperson tweeted: "In the course of clearing the streets and restoring order at Lake Street and Snelling Avenue, four people were arrested by State Patrol troopers, including three members of a CNN crew. The three were released once they were confirmed to be members of the media."

Viewers and CNN swiftly condemned the arrests, with Minnesota state Senator Kari Dziedzic tweeting: "Why are you arresting @CNN reporters. They were moving back and asking where do you want us to move. I was watching live on the air. They were cooperating."

She said she called the Minnesota State Patrol and Department of Public Safety to explain why the crew was detained, adding: "This is not acceptable."

CNN called for their immediate release, saying the crew was arrested "for doing their jobs despite identifying themselves" and their First Amendment rights had been violated.

The Minnesota State Patrol claims the crew members were arrested because they were told to move and didn't.

SEE ALSO: Police fire in air to keep crowds from Ethiopian singer's funeral

Mr Jimenez had just shown a protester being arrested when about half a dozen white police officers surrounded him.

He calmly identified himself as a journalist and asked the officers where his crew should stand to continue covering the scene at about 5.10am local time on Friday after a third night of clashes between police and protesters, arson, looting and vandalism

The journalist showed his press credentials to the officers.

"We can move back to where you like," he told the officers wearing gas masks and face shields, before explaining that he
and his crew were members of the press.

He added: We can move back to where you'd like here. We are live on the air at the moment.

SEE ALSO: 81 killed in violence after death of Ethiopian singer

"This is the four of us. We are one team.

"Just put us back where you want us. We're getting out of your way. So, just let us know.

"Wherever you'd want us, we will go.

"We were just getting out of your way when you were advancing through the intersection.

"Let us know and we've got you."

SEE ALSO: Australia considering 'safe haven' offer to Hong Kongers

Mr Jimenez is then told "you are under arrest" and he calmly asks: "Why am I under arrest, sir?"


George Floyd Minneapolis Minnesota State Patrol Protest
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