A Black CNN Reporter Was Arrested Live on Air While Reporting in Minneapolis

CNN reporter Omar Jimenez, along with two members of his producing team, was arrested early Friday morning while covering the Minneapolis protests. Their arrests, which were captured in a live broadcast, came despite Jimenez explaining to Minnesota state patrol officials that they were media.

“Put us back where you want us, we are getting out of your way, so just let us know,” Jimenez, who is Black and Latino, is heard telling officers before he’s placed in handcuffs. “Wherever you want us, we will go, we’re just getting out of the way.”

With the camera still rolling, Jimenez continued to explain to viewers the latest from the demonstrations when an officer interrupted, saying, “You’re under arrest.” 

Another CNN reporter, Josh Campbell, a white man, said that he was nearby the scene and also stopped by police. But after identifying himself as a journalist, as Jimenez did, police allowed Campbell to carry on. “I was treated much differently than [Jimenez] was,” Campbell said.

Jimenez and his team, producer Bill Kirkos and photojournalist Leonel Mendez, have since been released. In a statement shortly after, the Minnesota State Patrol appeared to misrepresent the incident in order to justify the arrests.

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Minority rule, corruption, disinformation, attacks on those who dare tell the truth: There is a direct line from what's happening in Russia and Ukraine to what's happening here at home. And that's what MoJo's Monika Bauerlein writes about in "Their Fight Is Our Fight" to unpack the information war we find ourselves in and share a few examples to show why the power of independent, reader-supported journalism is such a threat to authoritarians.

Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

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