A Univision Chicago reporter and photographer were robbed at gunpoint in the Wicker Park area of the city early Monday morning while they prepared to film a segment on a wave of recent armed robberies.
The reporter, who asked to remain anonymous, told Chicago Block Club the incident, which occurred at 4:30 am in the 1200 block of North Milwaukee Avenue, was “total irony.”
He said, “As a journalist, you never want to be the story, right? You’re reporting on the story but you never think that you can become the story. That’s not why we do this. So I guess it’s another reminder of how important it is to keep doing these stories and to keep pressure on our local authorities to try to prevent more events like that.”
According to the staffer, the only only thing of value taken was the crew’s video camera. He said that both he and the photographer were OK but will now be more vigilant.
“This could happen to anybody. So it’s an eye opener, for anyone that works in news that this could happen. It happened to me early in the morning, but I think it could literally happen any time of day,” he said.
Raza Siddiqui, president of the National Association of Broadcast Employees and Technicians Local 41, said that the suspects demanded money from the two men, then went through their vehicle and stole a camera, two bags of equipment and the photographer’s backpack.
Luis Godinez, vice president of news at Univision Chicago, told the Chicago Tribune that the station opted not to include the incident on its 5 p.m. broadcast. “We don’t want to make the story about us, because there were other robberies that occurred within that same period,” he said.
It’s the second robbery of a Chicago news crew this month. On Aug. 8, a photographer with ABC7 was assaulted and robbed while covering a news conference in the 2800 block of West 5th Avenue. Police said the photographer was “fine and suffered only minor scrapes,” and that they are still investigating.
An on-camera incident, in which a man appeared to aim a gun at a camera during a Fox News reporter’s live shot, occurred in 2022.
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