RTDNA Condemns Arrests Of Journalists In Ferguson
August 14, 2014 at 7:03 AM (PT)
The RADIO TELEVISION DIGITAL NEWS ASSOCIATION has sent a letter to the Police Chief of FERGUSON, MO condemning the arrest of two journalists, the WASHINGTON POST's WESLEY LOWERY and the HUFFINGTON POST's RYAN J. REILLY, covering the unrest in the wake of the shooting of an unarmed teenager by a police officer.
LOWERY and REILLY were roughed up by police taken into custody at a MCDONALD'S while they were working, and then released without charges or explanation after being held in custody. REILLY was reportedly ordered to stop taking video and LOWERY was told to stop asking questions of the officers.
RTDNA Exec. Dir. MIKE CAVENDER told Chief THOMAS JACKSON in the letter that the police actions are "unconscionable and must be stopped immediately." Noting that JACKSON told a LOS ANGELES TIMES reporter that the arrests were made by “probably somebody who didn’t know better."
CAVENDER retorted, "Frankly, they should know better. The journalistic community is demanding that you, other command officials and all law enforcement officers involved in this continuing situation respect the rights of reporters and others journalists to provide news coverage in FERGUSON so long as they operate legally -- which these two reporters were doing. Harassment and abuse of anyone in a similar situation cannot be accepted and must not be tolerated by you and others charged with maintaining the peace and security in FERGUSON."