MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Duluth Police Department says they’ve identified the person who was caught on camera attacking a WCCO photojournalist Wednesday evening ahead of the president’s rally.
On Wednesday, photojournalist Dymanh Chhoun, who has covered several political events for WCCO-TV, was on assignment gathering video of Trump supporters and nearby protesters carrying signs for Democratic candidate Joe Biden.
While recording video with a cellphone, Chhoun captured Trump supporters as they confronted the protesters in a public space. Chhoun identified himself as a member of the media.
He began recording one Trump supporter when the man turned around and said: “You guys want to be peaceful? Be peaceful! You want to be violent? Come to me!” The man then punched the phone out of Chhoun’s hand.
Chhoun was not hurt. His phone was not damaged.
Duluth Police thanked the public for their numerous tips. They did not say whether they’ve taken the person into custody, nor was the person identified by name.
Politicians on both side spoke out against the attack, noting that the freedom of the press is protected in the Constitution.
The Asian American Journalists Association also released a statement, urging authorities in Duluth to fully investigate the attack.
“The press is not the enemy,” the statement said. “[I]t serves a fundamental role in a democracy by informing the public and holding powerful people and institutions accountable. Any threat to the press is a threat to a free society, free speech and the First Amendment.”