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Miller says detained reporter crossed line

A reporter who was detained by security guards at a campaign event for Alaska GOP Senate nominee Joe Miller was “crossing the line” with his conduct, the candidate said Monday.

Miller said that Alaska Dispatch staffer Tony Hopfinger followed him into the bathroom at the event and that he later disobeyed multiple requests to leave after the event.

{mosads}”This same individual, the blogger, he actually followed me into
the restroom,” Miller told Fox News’s Neil Cavuto. “This is not some sort of ‘He’s getting in your personal
space’ thing; this is just absolutely crossing the line. The blog he
works for has a history of being quite unfair in its approach to our
campaign, so this behavior shouldn’t be much of a surprise.”

Hopfinger’s handcuffing and arrest by private security guards working for Miller’s campaign sparked controversy on the campaign trail. Democratic nominee Scott McAdams and Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), whom Miller ousted in the GOP primary but who is waging a write-in bid, both condemned the move on Monday.

Hopfinger was reportedly asking Miller about his records as attorney for the Fairbanks North Star Borough. The Dispatch has sued to gain access to the records. Miller said last week he would no longer talk about his personal background.

Members of Miller’s security team apprehended Hopfinger, accusing him of trespassing and assaulting a bystander for shoving a security guard. Hopfinger was released when local police arrived on the scene.

Miller’s campaign said Monday that the security guards “did not know that the individual they detained was a blogger who was reporting on the campaign.”

Murkowski questioned the need for security guards, but Miller said on Fox that he was required to hire security guards per his contract to appear at the middle school where the event was held.

“He was asked to leave, asked to get out of the way. He asked about the
Fairbanks North Star Borough thing; I answered one question. He kept at
it,” Miller said. “I ended up turning around, going the other way. After I left the
building, the security team the contract required us to have there ended
up arresting him because he pushed one of their individuals.

“We think it was probably planned. Following the candidate into the restroom — I mean, come on,” he added.

Tags Lisa Murkowski

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