Minnesota Police Arrest CNN Reporter and Crew Covering George Floyd Protests Live on Air

CNN journalist Omar Jimenez and at least two crew members were arrested and taken into Minnesota State Patrol custody during a live broadcast on Friday covering protests over the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

In the live broadcast, Jimenez could be seen reporting on protests before pausing as state patrol officers appeared to pursue a demonstrator.

The journalist, who is black, is then seen speaking with state patrol officers directly, as he identified himself and his crew—including a producer and a camera operator—as journalists.

CNN producer and camera crew are all being arrested. They're all being led away. pic.twitter.com/7Qm5Nx9bHL

— Nick Gjerde (@NickGjerde) May 29, 2020

He then tells the officers the team would be willing to relocate if their location is an issue.

Eventually, Jimenez resumes reporting, when a state patrol officer tells him he is under arrest.

"Do you mind telling me why I'm under arrest, sir?" the journalist asks as the officer begins to handcuff him.

CNN anchors expressed confusion at the incident, saying they did not understand why their colleague was being taken into custody.

They asserted that the reporting team had been standing where they had previously been directed to stand prior to the arrest.

In a statement published on Twitter, CNN demanded the release of the journalists.

"A CNN reporter & his production team were arrested this morning in Minneapolis for doing their jobs, despite identifying themselves-a clear violation of their First Amendment rights," CNN said. "The authorities in Minnesota, incl. the Governor, must release the 3 CNN employees immediately."

Shortly after the arrests, CNN confirmed to Newsweek that the journalists had been released, with Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz apologizing to the broadcaster.

According to CNN, Walz apologized directly to CNN chief Jeff Zucker. Jimenez and his production team, the governor said, were well within their rights to report on the protests.

In a statement published on Twitter, Minnesota State Patrol said the journalists had been arrested in the process of "clearing the streets and restoring order."

"In the course of clearing the streets and restoring order at Lake Street and Snelling Avenue, four people were arrested by State Patrol troopers, including three members of a CNN crew," MSP said. "The three were released once they were confirmed to be members of the media."

Following the arrests, anchors on CNN's New Day spoke to correspondent Josh Campbell, a white journalist reporting from the same area as Jimenez.

Anchors asked him what he thought of the incident and whether his experience was different as a white reporter. That journalist said that his experience had been the "opposite" of Jimenez's, with the journalist being able to cover the same story after identifying himself as a reporter.

While Campbell said he had not witnessed Jimenez's arrest, he said: "I was treated much differently than he was."

The journalist said he had been "politely" asked by officers to move farther back from the scene. Campbell said he had been given the chance to comply with those orders.

Newsweek has contacted the Minnesota governor's office, as well as the Minnesota State Patrol for further comment.

This article has been updated with more information on the incident, to include a statement by the Minnesota State Patrol.

CNN journalist Omar Jimenez was taken into police custody during a live broadcast at protests in Minneapolis over George Floyd's death. CNN

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