Des Moines Register, Mediaite, KCCI, YouTube

Local Reporter Who Was Abused While Covering a Story Cites Racism as a Factor in Decision to Leave the State

Aug 2, 2016  •  Post A Comment

A local TV reporter says her encounters with racism while on assignment are part of the reason she left her job at KCCI-TV in Des Moines, Iowa. Emmy Victor, who is African-American, reportedly left the Hearst-owned CBS affiliate recently to pursue an opportunity in another state.

The Des Moines Register quotes the New Jersey native saying that “racism in the state did not help my decision to stay,” although she notes that she did have other reasons for leaving.

“Racism isn’t really something I experienced when I grew up on the East Coast,” Victor told the paper, adding: “It was something I had to get used to.”

“Victor said she didn’t have any problems in the metro area, but would sometimes feel uncomfortable when covering parts of rural Iowa,” the paper reports. “She said she would get negative reactions related to the color of her skin when she approached interview subjects and on social media.”

In an incident in June that received national attention, Victor was verbally abused by an angry woman while she was covering a story.

“Victor and KCCI photojournalist Zachary Hayes were reporting from a crime scene in Boone when they were confronted by a woman,” The Register reports. “Video showed the woman yelling at Victor, pushing the camera equipment, cursing and using a racial slur.”

The video clip below includes footage of the incident …


  1. As Doctor Seuss said: “Those who mind do not matter. Those who matter do not mind.”

  2. All of the TV stations that I worked for would never tolerate any harassment on their remote crews. That woman touched, knocked over equipment and made threats on a crew that within their rights to be where they were. I hope the station filed a complaint against her.

  3. Sorry, but grow up. It is disgusting, but that is what you do, if you’re a journalist. Just like soldiers don’t like getting shot at. Go into something that is less stressful

  4. That was the mother of the man who was killed. What do you expect?! So heartless of the camera crew to be there in the first place just to get a story.

    • You’re right, they definitely should have expected to be cursed at and have racial slurs screamed at them with fingers pointed in their faces and their equipment thrown around. That’s just part of any normal (totally non-racist) person’s grieving process, right?

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