A 36-year-old man pulled a knife on a television news crew covering an anti-lockdown protest in Huntington Beach, California, on Friday, the Los Angeles Times reported.
Christien Francis Petersen of Costa Mesa was arrested on suspicion of exhibiting a deadly weapon other than a firearm and kidnapping, The Orange County Register reported.
According to the TV station, Petersen approached a KTTV cameraman and reporter, pulled out a pocket knife and forced the crew into a news van to delete any footage in which he may have appeared, the station reported.
The journalists had been assigned to cover a local protest in Huntington Beach against a state-wide shelter-in-place order issued in March to try to curb the spread of coronavirus, the Los Angeles Times reported.
Petersen, whose arrest form listed him his occupation as an attorney, was being held on $100,000 bail.
Police said Petersen, who may have been intoxicated, was angry because he had been filmed by the KTTV news team at a “Live Free or Die” rally earlier Friday.
The reporter and cameraman were not hurt,
According to KTTV, the reporter and cameraman were not hurt in the incident.
When police arrived on the scene, they found Petersen still holding the videographer at knifepoint in the news van.
Christopher Darden, Petersen’s attorney, called the incident a “gross misunderstanding” in a statement.
Darden says that his client objected to being photographed because he claims he was not taking part in the protest and didn’t want to be associated with it since he’s looking for a job.
“When and if the opportunity arises he intends to offer his personal apology to the cameraman,” Darden said, The New York Post reported. Darden confirmed that Petersen is an attorney and said he’s a father of two.