Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Caught on tape

A story from a Fox affiliate in San Diego has been making the rounds across newsrooms today. Why? Perhaps this will explain it...



That's John Mattes, a reporter for XETV (Yes, the call letters are correct. The station is actually licensed in Tijuana, Mexico.), after he was attacked by an accused scammer. The man wasn't happy with Mattes' reporting on his identity fraud scheme, so he and his wife decided to drop in on Mattes during an interview. The result? Watch and see for yourself.

Nothing like that has ever happened in this market, but we're not immune to shoves, pushes, and thrown microphones. Why someone would attack or harass a reporter while the camera is rolling...I don't know.

20 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

WOW! Hey, I wonder if that'll go on anyone's resume tape? Did the videographer do the right thing by shooting it all or should he have put the camera down and helped out?

9:18 PM  
Blogger Tom Carten said...

Howard said: Why someone would attack or harass a reporter while the camera is rolling...I don't know.

Why a photog would not come to the assistance of the reporter ... I don't know. He could have stashed the camera in the wagon, come back and pulled the perp off the reporter. He already had enough stuff on tape for the courts.

1:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

oh how soon we forget...
i was working at 28 covering a drowing back in 2004 and the victim's brother and father attacked ch 16 photog lou romeo in front of us. poor lou wasnt even shooting, although he did have the camera on his shoulder. it was an unprovoked attack and the two men broke his cheekbone and roughed up his face pretty good. it all happened so fast that it took a couple seconds before anyone stepped in - and there were a lot of emergency responders and media standing around. photogs from other stations taped the attack and it ran on the news that night, following the drowning story.

5:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow -- it just goes to show there are still complete scumbags in the world, but even with what happened with this reporter, I have to admire how determined he was to continue on with the story..if it had been me, I think I would have b---ch slapped that woman something fierce, let alone kick the scumbag husband in the jewels ! Both she and her loser husband deserve to have the book thrown at them..and I hope the reporter sues the living daylights out of them. Hey, he and his cameraman were just doing their job ! I hope the reporter's doing ok now...just goes to show you what lengths low lifes in society will go to in order to continue conning innocent people.

9:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You stay classy, San Diego.

Ron.

10:34 AM  
Anonymous Former Nexstar Victim said...

While I am glad the photographer continued to roll tape on this ugly incident, I would have kicked the shit out of that woman also. That woman was the one who instigated the whole thing. As soon as she grabbed the camera, I would have backslapped that bitch into next week. I do give props to the photographer and the people who tried to help out. After seeing this incident, I think crews should be allowed to carry tazers, mace, or other weapons to protect themselves from people like that. It's not the media's fault those stupid assclowns screwed over all those people. It was the media's right to expose those morons. Good for XETV (Fox 6).

I can't believe they were allowed to go free on bail! What are the cops down there thinking? Those two clowns are now flight risks.

11:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Lou Romeo story is a litmus test... given enough emotion and it can happen anywhere and as some have said since seeing this post, it's interesting the reporter got it for once and not the shooter.

Being a reporter, we provoke feelings of anger and defense, especially the investigative biz.

It looked like that San Diego reporter was standing on some sort of property. Was he on the attackers' ground? I would advise anyone in a similar situation to remain on the sidewalk. And, chat it out with your photog... what would you want him or her to do if a similiar episode took place? Do women reporters ever get ass-whipped? I haven't heard. I know the men have...

1:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The never ending debate about what's a news crew to do. Do you help someone in dire need, or do you honor your first responsibility in covering the story? To me, a no-brainer, you help whoever needs your help.

As a photog, my guts would've been to use whatever means necessary to get the perp off of the reporter. If it meant clocking the a**hole with the camera, no problem. Nowadays, cameras are so small, it might not be that effective, but go back 5-10-15 years, yeah, a three-chip rig would make a great weapon, and in this case, a defensive weapon.

I actually admire the restraint a lot of photogs exhibit, because there are times they must be overwhelmed by the urge to tear some turd apart, and most photogs I know are quite capable of doing it.

4:21 PM  
Blogger Howard Beale said...

Why a photog would not come to the assistance of the reporter ... I don't know. He could have stashed the camera in the wagon, come back and pulled the perp off the reporter. He already had enough stuff on tape for the courts.

While I would hope a photog would come to a reporter's aid if his/her life was in danger, I can see why XETV's lensman stayed back. For one, there was someone else there trying to get the guy off the reporter. And the police were already on their way.

In situations like this, I guess you have to think like a photog. And I'm sure XETV's guy had his reasons for keeping the camera rolling.

8:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

oh how soon we forget...
i was working at 28 covering a drowing back in 2004 and the victim's brother and father attacked ch 16 photog lou romeo in front of us. poor lou wasnt even shooting, although he did have the camera on his shoulder. it was an unprovoked attack and the two men broke his cheekbone and roughed up his face pretty good. it all happened so fast that it took a couple seconds before anyone stepped in - and there were a lot of emergency responders and media standing around. photogs from other stations taped the attack and it ran on the news that night, following the drowning story.

5:44 AM

Who broke up the assault on Lou Romeo? The reporter with Romeo or the emergency responders at the scene?

10:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm sure XETV's guy had his reasons for keeping the camera rolling.


He most certainly did -- so they can use it as evidence in an upcoming lawsuit ! I totally understand why he did it...if the other guy hadn't been there to help out the reporter, I'm sure the photog would have put the camera down, left the tape rolling and went over to help...but, by keeing the tape rolling, he did the right thing -- himself, the reporter, and the station.

9:58 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

....Let us not forget the "shove" of Bob Reynolds from 16. That was done a few years back by then County Commissioner Frank Crossin, in front of at least 3 cameras! Reynolds was trying to ask him about Crossin's special treatment by cops during a suspected DUI stop. That was when Crossin was so out of it he fell out of his car ;-)

Crossin later decided not to run for reelection to "spend more time with his family"
Probably the real reason is an opponent could use to video to show the type of "public servent" he really is.

12:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Regarding the Lou Romeo assault at the drowning, who broke up that fight? His reporter or emergency responders?

3:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

concerning the lou romeo assault... actually it was a reporter from the citizens voice and someone else who stepped in... i am not sure if it was an emergency responder though.

9:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There's NO EXCUSE for ANYONE to try to harm a reporter or photographer. They're doing their JOB. If anyone doesn't want their faces plastered on the news, they shouldn't pull crimes. On another point: with our crazy legal system, the photographer should NOT help the reporter unless his/her life is threatened because it's probable the photographer would be charged with assault and be jailed while his "victim" is out on bail laughing at him and the retarded system that loves and protects criminals. It's self-defense for the reporter, but I'm betting ASSAULT charges for anyone helping. Sick society, and sick rules, but that's reality. Stay safe out there.

9:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And who could forget the attack on WYOU's Photog Davy Jones? It was outside a courthouse, during a perp walk. Andy Palumbo jumped in, wagging his finger. The video was good stuff. As soon as Jones got up, he was ready to fight the guy (and his brother?). I think the case was about child abuse or stealing a lot of money... something like that.
Andy, fill us in... too many gaps in my memory!

12:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

-- Do women reporters ever get ass-whipped? I haven't heard. ---

WBNG - TV's (Binghamton) Lila Peterson was bitch slapped by someone coming out of school board meeting back in the late 70's or early 80's. She wasn't injured, it was caught on tape, the bitch slapper was arrested on assault charges, but Gateway, who owned WBNG at the time declined to press charges.

Apparently Gateway didn't have the ball's or didn't want to piss anyone off to take this clown through the judicial process.

In the minds of broadcast ownership amd viewers... it's always open season on photogs and reporters.

The danger is even greater if you're a one-person-band.

Stay safe out there.....

8:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I recall the time I watched a criminal defendant get ticked off at Bob Reynolds outside a district judge's courtroom. The perp took a swipe at Bob's mic, which clattered to the ground, shattering as it went.
Bob's question to the dude was something along the lines of, "Why'd you do it?"
Did the perp's new crime justify Bob's question?

1:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you get a chance, check out the station's website --they've set up a forum re: John Mattes' attack...it is AMAZING some of the stupid (and downright disturbing) things people are saying on there...I hope JM doesn't read half of the filth on there...the message from the station GM was **very** well written and supportive of JM.

11:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Bob's question to the dude was something along the lines of, "Why'd you do it?"
Did the perp's new crime justify Bob's question?"

Ummmm...I have worked with Bob and his questions never "convict" a perp.
It's more like---police say you _________. Is that true etc. or court documents say you ___________. What do you have to say about that

11:35 AM  

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