A reporter was attacked outside of a Trump campaign rally in Duluth, Minnesota on Wednesday by a Trump supporter. The victim, photojournalist Dymanh Chhoun on assignment for WCCO-TV a local CBS affiliate, was using a phone to capture video of demonstrators who had gathered ahead of the rally.
Chhoun had identified himself as press before the assault. Thankfully, he was not injured during the violent outburst.
The attacker—who appeared to have punched a cellphone out of the photojournalist's hands—has yet to be publicly identified but can be seen clearly in the video.
The attacker can be heard in the video shouting before the assault.
"You guys want to be peaceful? Be peaceful! You want to be violent? Come to me and I'll…"
The unnamed man then punched at Chhoun before storming off still ranting:
"You wanna be violent? You wanna be violent?"
Bit of a paradox asking that when you are the one being violent, sir.
A fellow Trump supporter attempted to obscure the view of the still filming camera with a Trump/Pence sign as the assailant got away into the crowd.
The Duluth police said they're investigating the disturbance and issued a statement saying:
"A male reported that while recording footage on his phone for a news report, another male hit the phone out of the reporting party's hand,"
"The male who hit the phone left without incident several minutes before this event was reported to officers. There were no injuries or property damage reported in connection with this incident and no citations issued at this time. The Duluth Police Department is investigating this case."
Guy Still, the assignment manager for WCCO-TV, shared some of Mr. Chhoun's personal story and his dedication to both work and family.
Other social media users expressed their thanks and support for the photojournalist.
Donald Trump has consistently encouraged anger and attacks on journalists throughout his campaign referring to them as the "enemy of the people."
There have been multiple incidents over the last four years of these assaults.
Just two weeks ago at a Pennsylvania rally Trump praised violence against the press calling it "a beautiful site." Is it any wonder his supporters feel so comfortable in their attacks?
As verbal and physical attacks on journalists have increased, so has awareness of how important a free press and journalism are to our democracy.
The White House has as yet not commented on the latest attack against a member of the press at a Trump event.