Police officers were caught on camera manhandling at least two Associated Press journalists Tuesday night on the streets of New York City.
According to reports, both journalists were wearing AP identification.
What are the details?
Associated Press broadcast producer Robert Bumstead and photographer Maye-E Wong were on the streets reporting on the George Floyd protests and riots and on what tactics police were using to disperse the growing crowds.
Several New York City police officers approached Bumstead and Wong while they were covering the protests, demanding that they immediately leave. WNBC-TV reported that no less than six officers approached the two.
“Get the f*** out of here, you piece of s**t,” one officer could be heard shouting.
Bumstead attempted to justify his and Wong’s presence on the street, as essential workers are considered exempt from any imposed curfews, but the officer wasn’t having it.
“I don’t give a s**t!” the officer added.
Bumstead was not relenting, however, and attempted to explain to the officers that they were employed by the Associated Press.
The officers responded by physically forcing Bumstead and Wong out of the area, even as Bumstead attempted to leave in his car.
Wong said that the officers refused to listen to reason over the journalists’ presence, according to KTLA-TV.
“They didn’t care,” Wong said. “They were just shoving me.”
A spokesperson for the NYPD said that the department was looking into the incident, according to the station.
Lauren Easton, a spokesperson for the Associated Press, said that the officers’ actions were inexcusable.
“The role of journalists is to report the news on behalf of the public,” Easton said. “It is unacceptable and deeply troubling when journalists are harassed simply for doing their job.”
NYPD confronts media as curfew takes effect