- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 22, 2016

CNN national correspondent Ed Lavandera was knocked to the ground during a live television broadcast Wednesday evening in Charlotte, North Carolina, as protests waged over the fatal police shooting this week of Keith Lamont Scott turned chaotic.

Mr. Lavandera was reporting from downtown Charlotte shortly after 9 p.m. when cameras captured him being attacked live on air.

The journalist was sent to the ground after an unidentified man rushed his way and slammed into him with his shoulder.

Ed, are you OK?” CNN’s Anderson Cooper asked off-camera as the broadcast continued.

“Yeah yeah, we’re fine, Anderson,” Mr. Lavandera replied once back on his feet. “Just someone taking out their frustration on me.”

Mr. Lavandera, a 15-year veteran of the cable network, detailed the assault further during an interview with CNN’s Don Lemon later Wednesday evening.

“I didn’t see it coming,” he recalled. “All I heard was someone yelling at me that I need to, quote, ‘tell the truth,’ and next thing you know, I got kind of blindsided.”

An individual who claimed to be the assailant later approached Mr. Lavandera and apologized for the ambush, the correspondent said.

“He came up to me and actually hugged me and apologized for what he had done. I asked him what had happened, what had made him so angry, and he didn’t really explain anything,” Mr. Lavandera said.

“Kind of another odd moment in this surreal evening,” he added.

Charlotte’s WCNC-TV also reported that one of its television reporters and a cameraman were taken to a hospital after being attacked while covering Wednesday’s events.

Wednesday marked the second consecutive night of protests in Charlotte waged in response to the death of Mr. Scott, a 43-year-old father of seven who was shot and killed by law enforcement Tuesday afternoon in a parking lot near the University of Charlotte. Police claim he was armed at the time of the incident; his family says he was reading a book.

North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory declared a state of emergency in Charlotte on Wednesday evening as protests intensified and turned violent. At least five officers and nine civilians were injured during Wednesday’s unrest, Charlotte Police Chief Kerr Putney said Thursday, including a man who was shot and critically wounded.

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