New video shows the moment MAGA rioters turned on the media, destroying television cameras, chasing down news crews trying to report on the carnage at the US Capitol and violently attacking a photojournalist on a day that left at least five dead.
An angry mob of Donald Trump supporters was caught on camera swarming a media crew set up outside the Capitol building and smashing up thousands of dollars worth of equipment on Wednesday.
In one video captured on a GoPro camera by the AP’s Julio Cortez and posted on Instagram, viewers can see MAGA rioters attacking his college, photojournalist John Minchillo.
In the footage, rioters can be heard yelling ‘Why are the media here?’ and ‘We’re coming for you,’ despite the photojournalists doing nothing but taking pictures.
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This is the moment AP photographer John Minchillo was attacked at the Capitol by angry MAGA rioters
Decked out in gear to protect himself from both the riot and COVID-19, Minchillo (L) was prepared for the day at hand
Julio Cortez, a fellow AP photographer, used his GoPro to capture the shocking assault that took place against Minchillo
Multiple times, Minchillo is grabbed and shoved through the crowd as angry rioters yell at the photojournalist
In the footage, suddenly Minchillo is grabbed and dragged into the crowd, where the camera temporarily loses sight of him as Cortez attempts to follow.
Eventually, Minchillo is found being pushed around by the rioters, with at least one shouting ‘Get the f*** out of here!’
Minchillo is then pushed over a wall along with a rioter, where he takes what appears to be a very hard fall. People question whether he is a member of Antifa.
A MAGA supporter – wearing a red hat – and another protester then appear to come to Minchillo’s aid and start defending him before a couple of people start leading him through the crowd.
At least once in the video, Minchillo is accused of being a member of Antifa, even though he flashes his press credential
Minchillo is then shoved over this wall, which was the hardest fall he appeared to take during the footage
Throughout the video, Minchillo is shoved around by MAGA rioters assaulting him and preventing him from doing his job
Eventually, this red-hatted MAGA supporter tries to defense Minchillo as a member of the press and stop the attacks
Several protesters then help lead Minchillo out of the angry mob before he could be hurt even further
Minchillo managed to return to the Capitol later to capture pictures of the violent riots
‘Thankfully, he wasn’t injured,’ Cortez wrote of Minchillo on Instagram. ‘He was labeled as an anti protesters, even though he kept flashing his press credentials, and one person can be heard threatening to kill him. This is an unedited, real life situation of a member of the press keeping his cool even though he was being attacked. A true professional and a great teammate, I’m glad we were able to get away.’
Remarkably, photographs from the Capitol later in the day bear Minchillo’s credit, meaning he was able to return to the sickening scene to capture the historic event.
Meanwhile, other journalists and TV crews were forced to abandon the area and flee as the violent thugs wielding sticks pushed over metal barricades and entered the area they had set up in.
The mob roared with cheers as they kicked over lights and cameras, battered the equipment with flags and sticks and poured water over the electrical gear.
MAGA rioters have turned on the media, destroying television cameras and chasing down news crews trying to report on the carnage at the US Capitol
An angry mob of Donald Trump supporters was caught on camera swarming a media crew set up outside the Capitol building and smashing up thousands of dollars worth of equipment
Journalists and TV crews were forced to abandon the area and flee as the violent thugs wielding sticks pushed over a barricade and entered the area where they had set up
The mob roared with cheers as they kicked over lights and cameras, battereing them with flags and sticks
Some of the crowd then made a noose from the camera cord and hung it from a tree while one man was seen trying to set fire to equipment as it lay in ruins on the ground.
‘We are the news now,’ shouted one man, according to Buzzfeed reporter Paul McLeod.
Another Trump supporter then congratulated the vandals on their work, who told him it was ‘beautiful’.
‘You’re all patriots! I love all of you,’ he said.
One of the culprits replied: ‘You missed it bud. We bum rushed it all. It was beautiful.’
Separate footage of the incident shared by Julia Rosas on social media showed one man swinging a flag pole at the media crew, while others shouted threats to ‘get out of here’ as the crew quickly backed away.
Some of the equipment that was left destroyed was branded Associated Press while reports on social media said Fox News – once Trump’s favorite outlet – had also been targeted.
The attack on the press comes as Trump has repeatedly blasted what he calls the ‘lamestream media’ and called journalists ‘the enemy of the people’.
Fox has felt the president’s wrath of late, after the outlet was first to call Arizona for Joe Biden on November 3 – setting off a furious phone call between Trump and media magnate Rupert Murdoch.
Some of the crowd made a noose from the camera cord and hung it from a tree, according to Buzzfeed reporter Paul McLeod
‘We are the news now,’ shouted one man, according to Buzzfeed as another Trump supporter then congratulated the vandals on their work
A vandal is seen destroying the equipment in scenes of chaos in Washington DC on Wednesday
Some of the equipment that was left destroyed was branded Associated Press while reports on social media said Fox News – once Trump’s favorite outlet – had also been targeted
People – some sporting MAGA hats – surveyed the damage as the Capitol building looms in the background
One Trump supporter is seen trying to set some of the equipment alight outside the Capitol building
One man is seen dousing the gear with water after news crews fled
While chaos ensued outside the US Capitol on Wednesday, it was nothing compared to the unprecedented violence that broke out inside the seat of government.
MAGA supporters stormed inside the building and violently clashed with police in a bid to stop Joe Biden’s victory being certified, causing lawmakers to take cover and flee to an undisclosed location for safety while the building went into lockdown.
One female Trump supporter, identified as US Air Force veteran Ashli Babbit of San Diego, died after being shot in the chest.
It was not immediately clear who shot the woman and an investigation is ongoing.
Dozens of police were also reportedly injured and at least one pipe bomb was found on the grounds.
Several prominent Trump supporters posed for photos at the Senate dais moments after Vice President Mike Pence delivered his rebuke to Donald Trump there while others broke into Nancy Pelosi’s office, with one man later boasting about looting an envelope from the House Speaker’s desk.
President-elect Joe Biden addressed the nation in a speech telling the ‘mob to pull back’ and urging President Donald Trump to tell his fans to stop the violence and leave the Capitol building.
Supporters of Donald Trump are seen inside the US Capitol after rioters breached security and entered
Capitol police officers point their guns at a door that was vandalized in the House Chamber during a joint session of Congress
An explosion caused by a police munition is seen while Trump supporters gather in front of the Capitol on Wednesday
Trump finally gave an address from the White House later in the afternoon telling his ‘very special’ supporters that he loves them and understands their pain but asking them ‘to go home’.
This came just hours after he held a rally where he had encouraged his supporters to march to the Capitol in protest at the certification of Biden’s win and where his personal attorney and the man who spearheaded his failed election legal battle – Rudy Giuliani – told supporters to pursue a ‘trial by combat’.
The National Guard was deployed to help police enforce a 6pm curfew in Washington DC to stem the violence and the building was briefly secured.
Another lockdown was issued in the evening due to an ‘internal security threat’ after an officer was reportedly found unconscious.
At around 8pm lawmakers flanked by armed guards began arriving back at the Capitol to resume the Joint Session to certify the Electoral College count of the presidential election.
Vice President Mike Pence condemned the violent siege as he reopened the Senate telling the perpetrators ‘violence never wins. Freedom wins. And this is still the people’s house.’
Three others reportedly died of medical emergencies during the siege on the Capitol.
Early on Friday morning, Capitol police officer Brian Sicknick died of injuries suffered during the attack, pushing the death toll to five.