Videos captured Black Lives Matter protesters gleefully beating an effigy of a journalist with a bat like a piñata because she’s married to a police union leader.
The startling incident occurred Saturday near Minneapolis.
The protesters demanded the resignation of Minneapolis Police Officers Federation President Bob Kroll and then hoisted up a piñata with the visage of his wife, Liz Collin, who is a news anchor at WCCO-TV.
Video of the incident was posted to social media by protesters proud of their intimidating behavior, but was later deleted.
The violent destruction of an effigy of a Minnesota journalist – @lizcollin – by protesters standing in the drivewa… https://t.co/0vqJd0Iimq
— Michael Brodkorb (@Michael Brodkorb)1597696266.0
Protesters were joined by CAIR leaders and John Thompson, a Democrat campaigning for State House in Minnesota. Thompson accused Kroll of being a member of the Ku Klux Klan in a vitriolic tirade outside of Kroll’s home.
Hundreds of #BlackLivesMatter protesters drove to Trump Supporting Minneapolis Police Union leader Bob Kroll &… https://t.co/g92PCGB5KU
— Nathan Irons Roberts (@Nathan Irons Roberts)1597529406.0
The protesters cheered when a man with a bat beat both of the piñatas made up to look like Kroll and his wife.
Image Source: YouTube screenshot
The back of the caricature of Collin had a quote denying that her marriage to a police union leader meant she could not report the news objectively.
“Is it a conflict of interest for me to be a journalist married to the Minneapolis police union boss?” she asked. “My answer: No.”
According to BMTN, Kroll has been the subject of numerous protests since the death of George Floyd in late May. Activists see his tenure as the police union leader as a barrier to addressing systemic problems within the Minneapolis Police Department.
WCCO-TV anchor Jason DeRusha condemned the action in a statement to BMTN.
“Protest. Complain. Advocate. Speak out. Picket my station again! But making a piñata out of a journalist and beating it is disgusting, offensive and sad. This is where we are? That all of these intelligent people thought this was ok?” he said.
Former Minnesota GOP Deputy Chair Michael Brodkorb also criticized the rancorous behavior in a tweet.
“The violent destruction of an effigy of a Minnesota journalist – @lizcollin – by protesters standing in the driveway of her home needs to be immediately denounced by the @mnspj and other journalists,” Brodkorb said.
“This behavior is dangerous, harassing, and threatening,” he added.
Here’s the video of the intimidating protest:
[embedded content] Protest from outside the house of Bob Kroll, President of Minneapolis Police Union www.youtube.com