April 27, 2015

At least nine journalists have been beaten or injured in the Baltimore riots this week — including several Monday night.

Casey Harper, a reporter with the Daily Caller Foundation, says he took a liquor bottle to the head amid a “mob of attackers.”

Trey Yingst, a reporter for News2Share tells me that he was traveling with Daily Caller journalists Conner Wolf, Casey Harper and Grae Stafford when Wolf was slugged in the face by a rioter. Wolf fell to the ground. Other reporters rescued him and pulled him away. A New York Daily News photographer captured Wolf lying on the hood of a car as colleagues tried to stop control the bleeding from Wolf’s broken nose. http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/baltimore-riots-journalists-brutalized-protesters-article-1.2201559

Yingst said three or four guys carrying liquor bottles and one of them held a hammer started moving quickly to strike again. “Somebody tried to grab my phone. Another guy hit Casey across the face with a liquor bottle. Casey fell to the ground. There were some guys on top of him and we pulled him away.”

Yingst said a journalist from the New York Daily News passed by in a car and the journalists all piled in.

Yingst said Harper suffered a broken cheekbone, Wolf’s nose was broken. Yingst, by the way, was one of the journalists who was arrested while covering the Ferguson, Missouri demonstrations in November 2014.

A Baltimore Sun photo editor was attacked while taking photos.

A CNN journalist was also attacked tonight while live-streaming video coverage. CNN’s photojournalist Oliver Janney told me by direct message, “I have a broken nose and three stitches in my upper lip.”  He tweeted: 

I got jumped covering the Baltimore violence. Broken nose, busted lip, phone stolen. I’m ok.

Washington Post reporter Petula Devorak reported late Monday that she had been attacked by rioters:

“In a flash, one of them bumped into me and grabbed the phone out of my hand. I chased after him, screaming, and other protesters knocked into me, tripped me and shoved me to the ground. They circled around me, some with bricks or rocks or bottles in their hands.

But one boy pushed through the crowd and pulled me up, another came to my other side.

“We’ll get your phone back, come over here,” he said, pulling me away from the knot of teens and toward some other journalists, one of whom had a bloody scrape on his head.”

A CCTV staffer was also reportedly attacked:
Screen Shot 2015-04-27 at 8.16.24 PM

Baltimore TV reporter Christie Illeto at WJZ said she and her crew caught a face full of mace when they were sprayed accidentally. She tweeted:

Screen Shot 2015-04-27 at 8.29.29 PM

Later, she told me:

yes got hit with mace or pepper spray twice in the eyes… Unintentionally.

Photojournalist William Seiders posted images of the dents in his truck.
He said he and reporter Christina Butler were unhurt.

99.1 WNEW Radio reporter Steve Dorsey also was attacked while he covered the riots that unfolded near the CVS store that the world saw being looted and burned live on TV.

Dorsey told WJZ radio’s Mary Bubala:

“I was just about to do a live shot on the phone when out of no where a protester came up in front of me, shouted something at me, hit me in the face. I fell down and my phone dropped out of my hand and at that point he was going to kick me while I was laying down on the asphalt, and a few other protesters intervened and they pushed that guy back and I was able to escape with the help, limping, with some other protesters.”

He also tweeted:

Also on Monday, a producer for Ruptly was surrounded by a mob of young rioters, one of which stole her bag. The reporter chased the thief, and cops moved in to catch him. Ruptly caught the whole thing on video:

Even before Monday night, journalists caught themselves in the crossfire between police and protesters. Over the weekend, a video captured City Paper Photo Editor J.M. Giordano being tackled and beaten by Baltimore City police while bystanders screamed “he’s a photographer.”

City Paper reported:

In a video shot by City Paper Managing Editor Baynard Woods you can see Giordano, wearing a green jacket, and a protester, both of whom had just been knocked to the ground by police, being beaten as Woods yells, “He’s a photographer! He’s press!”

Giordano says he was standing next to the protester in the video, facing the police line, at about 12:30 when someone threw a rock which hit a police officer’s shield.

“They mobilized,” he says. The police line moved forward and Giordano did not move fast enough for them. “I always move at the last second,” he says. Five or six police officers in riot gear hit Giordano and the other protester with their shields, knocking them to the ground.

“They just swarmed over me,” he says. “I got hit. My head hit the ground. They were hitting me, then someone pulled me out.”

“I kept shooting it,” he says. “As soon as I got up I started taking pictures.” He says the guy who was next to him (who did not throw anything, he is sure) got arrested and was loaded into a van. Joe was not. He thinks it is because police recognized him as a local reporter and figured arresting him would cause a backlash.

“They [police] tried to block me from shooting.”


Giordano, an award-winning Baltimore based photojournalist tweeted:

Screen Shot 2015-04-27 at 8.52.44 PM

In addition to non-stop live coverage and online streaming, local journalists in Baltimore found useful ways to cover the unfolding story.

WJZ included a live blog and slideshows.

WMAR built  a live rolling blog of unfolding events. WMAR’s front page also included live streaming video and didn’t require the user to click into another page to stay on top of what was happening.

WBAL included a useful timeline.

The Baltimore Sun’s website is loaded with multimedia. I found this interactive map to be especially useful to explain where all of the problems were.  One of the Sun’s more interesting photo collections centers just on protest signs.

Screen Shot 2015-04-27 at 6.43.53 PM








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