Violent Far Left Protester Acquitted After Hitting KATU Cameraman in Head With Wooden Pallet
A jury in Portland (of course) has delivered not guilty verdicts in the case of an anti-ICE protester who was up on charges of assault and harassment after hitting a KATU news cameraman with a wooden pallet during last summer’s Occupy ICE protest encampment.
Despite multiple witnesses and the cameraman recording during the incident, a jury of six ruled that the actions of protester Danialle Inez James did not constitute assault or harassment, essentially saying that it’s legal for protesters to order members out of public areas and then physically attack the members of the media for being in public areas.
A Multnomah County jury acquitted a 33-year-old woman of charges that she assaulted a TV news cameraman during a protest last summer outside the Southwest Portland offices of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Jurors found Danialle Inez James not guilty of the charges of fourth-degree assault and harassment of KATU cameraman Carter Maynard. Prosecutors contended that James slammed a wooden gate into the back of Maynard’s head on June 28 and that she appeared to be motivated by her hostility toward the media.
But during a four-day trial that ended last week in Circuit Court, James and her defense attorney contended that she hadn’t swung the gate into the cameraman. They also claimed the cameraman conjured up a story that the government then latched on to bring her down.
Yet there was no dispute that James was unhappy with the TV coverage as demonstrators camped on Day 11 of the five-week-long protest outside ICE offices. The group had gathered in opposition to the Trump administration’s policy of separating immigrant children from their parents along the U.S.-Mexico border.
James testified that she thought showing TV images of the immigrants attending the protest would endanger their lives. So she said she tried to sabotage the efforts of the KATU reporter and cameraman by repeatedly saying expletives in the background as they tried to do live broadcasts.
Jurors watched video of James, wearing a pink camouflage onesie, exclaiming “(Expletive) the media!,” calling the KATU employees “maggots” and broadcasting on her Facebook Live account as she insulted the KATU reporter’s makeup and clothes.
Jurors also watched video footage recorded by Maynard as he held the camera looking away from James. It doesn’t show James swinging the gate into the back of his head but captures James calling out, “You really get the (expletive) out!” The video then shows the scene as Maynard spins around in a circle and voices are heard exclaiming: “Oh!” and “Whoa, whoa, whoa!”
The gate was made from a wooden pallet and was part of a fence bordering the protest encampment where James and many others had stationed themselves.
During more than four hours of testimony, Maynard said he saw James’ hand on the gate just before and after he was struck from behind. He said the impact left him with pain, dizziness, headaches and tenderness around a swollen, bruised area of his head.
A KOIN-6 cameraman, who had been standing next to Maynard, said he saw James intentionally swing the gate into Maynard.
James testified that she had her hand on the gate but she didn’t slam the gate into Maynard. Rather, she let the gate go and it began to close on him on its own, she said.
The prosecution contended that James was familiar with the gate and its ability to swing to a close because she’d been at the camp for days. At the very least James acted “recklessly” in letting it hit the back of Maynard’s head, said prosecutor Kate Molina.
Two medical professionals who examined the cameraman diagnosed him with a concussion and testified for the prosecution. A doctor hired by the defense said Maynard hadn’t suffered a concussion. The prosecution noted that the defense doctor hadn’t examined Maynard.
Defense attorney Karen Mockrin told jurors that both cameramen were “lying.”
“Whatever happened, that’s not it,” Mockrin said. “That’s ridiculous.”
Although James had admitted that she had repeatedly cursed at the media and told them to leave, she told jurors she doesn’t hate media. “To be honest with you, I was grateful for the media coverage — people trying to show the world what was going on,” she said.
Upon hearing the six-person jury’s verdict Thursday, James sobbed and embraced a crowd of supporters.
“Those (expletives) tried to pin me,” she said. “Not guilty. Not guilty. Thank you!”
Maynard wasn’t present when the verdict was read. KATU’s news director didn’t return a call seeking comment.
But in a Facebook post five days after the protest encounter, Genevieve Reaume, the KATU reporter, described what she said were physical and verbal assaults on “multiple journalists” by “multiple protesters” that day.
“This treatment is unacceptable and will not be tolerated,” Reaume wrote. “We are here to do an important job, to talk to all sides, to find the truth and report the facts.”
Here’s the video of the incident, in which James can be seen shouting profanities and racist epithets at the media:
Had the cameraman decided to defend himself, he likely would have been arrested and charged with daring to disrupt the unruly protesters.
Portland based journalist Andy Ngo screen capped comments made by James after the verdict.
Danialle Inez James has taken to social media to celebrate the verdict. “THE ANGRY BLACK WOMAN CARD DIDNT WORK FOR THE GOVERNMENT THEY WANTED TO PUSH THAT ONE HARRRRRRRD” pic.twitter.com/l7qchOt4CS
— Andy Ngo (@MrAndyNgo) May 21, 2019
The “Occupy ICE” protesters were so out of hand that Portland mayor Ted Wheeler evidently ordered the police to not respond to DHS and ICE employees who were being attacked in the street.
Danialle James was also involved in a City Hall protest in 2016, which resulted in several dozen Portland police officers being called in to physically remove the protesters from the building as they were disrupting and shutting down a city council meeting.
According to court records, Danialle James has been involved in several cases involving traffic tickets, evictions, child custody and child support (apparently she started popping them out at age 16), credit companies suing her, and a couple of lawsuits that settled out of court in which she was the plaintiff. I’m sure her next lawsuit will be against the cameraman for putting his body right where she was slamming the pallet, thus damaging her pallet with the back of his skull.