Hamilton police have provided little detail after a photojournalist was arrested and another put in handcuffs while working at the scene of a fatal accident in Waterdown.
David Ritchie, a freelance photojournalist, was arrested after recording footage of the area where a 10-year-old Hamilton girl was struck and killed Tuesday evening.
Ritchie says he left his camera unattended and went back to his vehicle to change his batteries. When he returned, his camera was gone and a police officer admitted to taking it.
Ritchie says the police officer referred to media as “scum bags” and the two got into a verbal altercation. He says the officer then tackled and arrested him. He was charged with obstruct and resisting arrest.
Jeremy Cohn, a Global News camera operator arrived a short time later and, according to Ritchie, was told by police that he could not be standing where he was. When the cameraman questioned the officer, he was put in handcuffs. Richie was charged with obstruct and resisting arrest, Cohn was not charged.
Hamilton police Chief Eric Girt commented briefly on the arrests by saying, “as Chief of police, I take the arrest of any member of the media seriously. As a result, I am reviewing this incident in the context of what transpired yesterday.”
Ritchie later tweeted about the incident saying, “Thanks for the support, I have great relationships with many first responders. This was an isolated issue and I will be seeking resolution.”
Thanks for the support, I have great relationships with many first responders. This was an isolated issue and I will be seeking resolution.
— DR (@Media371) May 17, 2017