Earlier this month, a photojournalist was physically assaulted and removed from covering the New Jersey Parent Summit at the behest of CNN political analyst April Ryan, a fierce Trump critic and, ironically, a vocal supporter for a free press. Ryan was the keynote speaker of the night.
The video of the incident captured Ryan, American Urban Radio’s White House correspondent, calmly telling the audience, “When I speak, I don’t have news covering my speech," as the journalist, editor for New Brunswick Today Charlie Kratovil, was targeted for ouster. The shocking video shows Kratovil being physically manhandled and scolded by proponents of Ryan after he was kicked out of the event.
Kratovil told Fox News this week that he was physically assaulted by Ryan’s bodyguard and had his camera taken from him. He also noted that he was troubled by the actions of Ryan, a fellow journalist, whom he said he was a fan of before the incident.
“I don’t know what the misunderstanding was but I was definitely, you know, felt violated," Kratovil told “The Ingraham Angle” guest host Jesse Watters.
“After roughly three hours covering the event ‘without incident,’ Kratovil claims he was approached by Ryan’s security guard Joel Morris who demanded he stop recording, before grabbing the camera and walking out of the ballroom and into the hotel lobby,” Fox News reported.
According to Kratovil, other journalists were taping the speech, too, and he was never informed he was barred from the event.
“I kind of snuck away to get some space from him and he chased me down, grabbed my arm twisted my arm behind my back and hurt my shoulder and forearm,” Kratovil said of Ryan’s bodyguard.
“I think this is supremely ironic, not expected, and certainly not behavior that’s befitting somebody who knows journalism,” the editor told Watters. “Somebody who’s been in the field for a long time. She wouldn'’t want to be treated like that. So I don’t see why she can come into my community and have her people come in and violate our laws like that.”
As noted by Watters, Ryan has been vocal about the freedom of the press.
“I have never seen anything like this in this country by a President and his administration. FREEDOM OF THE PRESS. We are not in Russia or China. Our jobs are to ask questions. A lot of times questions they don’t like. What in the world???” the CNN analyst tweeted last summer.
In April, Ryan said then-White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders should be fired for allegedly lying about the Russia probe and suggested to CNN host Erin Burnett that Sanders was in-part responsible for threats she and her colleagues in the media have faced.
“Sarah plays a dangerous game in that room,” Ryan said. “The game is dangerous because she is lying to the American public. Then, on top of all that, she says the press is fake when she’s faking reports from the people’s house. She’s calling us fake? We’ve had colleagues who’ve had to move from their houses because of threats. I have to have security because of being called ‘fake’ and a ‘loser’ and all sorts of things from that White House. It’s time for her to go.”