Media members react to arrest of CNN crew: ‘Unacceptable attack on the free press’
Media members reacted swiftly on Friday after Minnesota state police arrested CNN reporter Omar Jimenez.
One reporter called the arrest “an unacceptable attack on the free press” after Jimenez and his camera crew were arrested on live television while covering protests that have erupted across Minneapolis following the violent arrest and death of George Floyd earlier this week.
The crew was later released.
“You’re under arrest,” one officer said in the middle of the report on the protests that have erupted in Minneapolis.
“OK, do you mind telling me why I’m under arrest? Why am I under arrest, sir?” Jimenez can be heard asking.
“You’re arresting him live on CNN. We told you before we’re with CNN,” one member of the CNN crew could be heard saying off-camera while filming.
Police say Jimenez and his crew were told to move and did not, prompting the arrests, per CNN.com.
Journalists quickly took to Twitter to voice their outrage, including Trey Yingst, a Fox News correspondent.
“FOX News Channel has always supported the First Amendment and this instance is no different,” the network said in a statement sent to The Hill. “We denounce the detainment of the CNN crew and stand with them in protecting the right to report without fear or favor.”
Police arrest CNN’s @OmarJimenez and his crew as they report live from Minneapolis.
This is an unacceptable attack on the free press and a violation of the 1st amendment.
— Trey Yingst (@TreyYingst) May 29, 2020
Are you actually kidding me? Minnesota police arrest a black CNN reporter live on air as he covers riots caused by police racism.
— Matthew Thompson (@mattuthompson) May 29, 2020
Watching my friend and colleague being surrounded by police and arrested while doing his job live on tv…I just can’t. @OmarJimenez conducted himself with incredible professionalism in a truly terrifying situation.
— Abby D. Phillip (@abbydphillip) May 29, 2020
The image on the left is a live CNN camera that continues to broadcast even though the CNN crew and correspondent @OmarJimenez have been arrested by law enforcement.
An outrageous infringement on press freedom. pic.twitter.com/TD6rJ3lx3f
— Yashar Ali (@yashar) May 29, 2020
Speechless. @OmarJimenez told law enforcement he was live on CNN, repeatedly offered to move wherever police wanted them to, and then was arrested without explanation on the air. https://t.co/JeHAYHLiDm
— Ali Vitali (@alivitali) May 29, 2020
Oh. My. God. CNN’s correspondent @OmarJimenez has just been arrested live on air pic.twitter.com/xCe0Y9gxa8
— Ashlee Mullany (@AshleeMullany) May 29, 2020
CNN’s John Berman reported on “New Day” one hour after the arrest that Gov. Tim Walz (D-Minn.) apologized to CNN President Jeff Zucker while promising to release Jimenez and his crew.
Updated: 12:50 p.m.
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