Two television news crews were attacked Thursday while covering a story, with one of the attackers, who wore a ski mask, pistol-whipping a camera operator.
SFGate.com reports that the crews, from Bay Area stations KTVU-TV and KNTV, were hit while they were reporting on a fatal shooting at Pier 14 in San Francisco. They were robbed of cameras, reportedly by a group of three men.
“The mugging — the latest in the Bay Area to target television crews — happened at 6:03 a.m. at the pier along the Embarcadero and was captured in part on the air,” the story reports. “KTVU reporter Cara Liu was reporting live when someone ran up and stole camera equipment belonging to KNTV, which also had a crew on the scene. During the incident, KNTV camera operator Alan Waples was pistol-whipped.”
KTVU’s Brian Flores was about to send it to Liu live at the scene when she reportedly appeared startled, saying, “Hold on, hold on, wait,” before disappearing from the screen, SFGate reports. At the time, Waples and KNTV reporter Kris Sanchez were apparently being robbed at gunpoint.
Moments later, KTVU anchor Flores asked: “Cara, you still there?,” and she replied, “Sorry, there’s an incident out here.”
When Flores asked, “What’s going on out there, Cara, doing OK?,” no one responded, as Liu and KTVU photographer Keith Crook had gone to help the KNTV crew.
The assailant reportedly pointed a gun at Crook and made off with both stations’ cameras and tripods, fleeing in a black BMW.