While covering a recent spate of armed robberies in the Windy City on Monday morning, a Univision news crew in Chicago was seized at gunpoint and robbed.
Three guys wearing ski masks got out of two automobiles at around 5:00 in the morning as a reporter and photographer were filming in the 1200 block of North Milwaukee Avenue in West Town, according to Univision and Chicago police.
The men then walked up to the TV crew on camera while flashing weapons. They searched the employees’ SUV after demanding the workers hand over their cash.
According to Raza Siddiqui, president of NABET-CWA Local 41, the suspects took the photographer’s backpack, two bags containing film equipment and a camera.
The Chicago Sun Times reports that no one from the news crew was hurt during the crime.
The journalists were covering a number of armed robberies in Chicago at the time. One of the cases was a woman whose car was stolen, and it happened on the same street where the crew had been robbed.
This is the second time this month that a Chicago television news team has been robbed.
On August 5, while covering a press conference in the 200 block of West 5th Avenue, an ABC 7 photographer was attacked and robbed.
In order to “voice some of their concerns” about field production and find out what they can do to support news crews, NABET-CWA is setting up a safety meeting for union members.
On Monday night, some of the union-affiliated news stations took further safety precautions, in some cases giving the news crews security.
“We want to make sure that we provide a longer-lasting solution that we work not only with management but our members, and make sure that we read some protocols that everyone is happy with and feels can be a workable solution,” Siddiqui said.
Last May, a Fox 32 news crew was filming a live programme on gun violence when a guy approached reporter Joanie Lum from behind and brandished what appeared to be a gun at the camera. He appeared to be clutching the gun as he went down the street in front of the camera.
Over the past year, Chicago has been plagued with robberies.
At least 12 mail carriers were robbed and subjected to armed threats in April, according to the Chicago Police Department (CPD). Theft included one USPS vehicle.
Three armoured trucks were robbed within hours of one another in the same month.
To save their companies and way of life, many Chicagoans have acted independently.
In at least 44 instances between 2020 and February 2023, according to Fox News Digital, a crime or attack was thwarted by a licenced gun owner who was carrying a hidden weapon.