Southern California Public Radio Condemns Immigration March Violence

Los Angeles (May 3, 2007) - On Tuesday, May 1st, 89.3 KPCC News Reporter Patricia Nazario was injured after being assaulted by a member of the Los Angeles Police Department. Ms. Nazario was covering the immigration reform march at MacArthur Park in Los Angeles.

The pro-immigration demonstrations created a significant regional and national news story, and it was important for KPCC, a Southern California Public Radio (SCPR) station, to assign multiple reporters to cover these marches and rallies. In the past year, similar demonstrations have been peaceful, and it was SCPR's expectation that this one would be no different.

"SCPR condemns the violent behavior of the small group of demonstrators that sparked the incident. SCPR appreciates the dangers and difficulties that police face, and we understand the importance of maintaining the public's safety in violent situations such as occurred this week," said SCPR President and CEO Bill Davis. "That said, SCPR condemns – in the strongest possible terms – the assault upon Ms. Nazario by a uniformed member of the LAPD. Ms. Nazario's press badge was clearly visible, and she verbally identified herself as a reporter to the police officer who subsequently hit her."

"SCPR is concerned about the LAPD's policies and procedures in this area. Our concerns extend to whether these policies and procedures are sufficient to guarantee the safety of journalists who report on potentially violent demonstrations," added Davis. "Furthermore, questions remain regarding whether the LAPD's leadership has been effective in communicating these policies and procedures to its rank-and-file officers."

Davis said SCPR is exploring all appropriate responses to this incident to ensure that what happened to Ms. Nazario never happens again.

Related KPCC Audio and News Stories

Audio: KPCC's Patricia Nazario, who was hit with a baton while police were breaking up the rally, speaks about the incident with KPCC producer Roger Rudick (5/1/07).

L.A. Immigrant Rights Rally Turns Violent (5/2/07)

Three Investigations to Probe MacArthur Park Clash (5/2/07)

March Organizers Decry Use of Force (5/2/07)

LAPD, Press have Long History of Bad Relationship (5/2/07)

Southern California Public Radio (SCPR) is a member-supported public radio network that operates 89.3 KPCC-FM in Los Angeles and Orange County, 89.1 KUOR-FM in the Inland Empire and 90.3 KPCV in the Coachella Valley. Reaching more than a 600,000 listeners every week, SCPR is the most listened to public radio news service of any kind in Southern California and serves the diverse communities of Southern California with award winning local news coverage as well as the most NPR (National Public Radio) content available anywhere in the region. SCPR's flagship station, KPCC, has garnered over 200 journalistic honors including 3 Distinguished Radio Journalist awards (from the Greater LA Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists) and the 2008 top honor for Breaking News from the LA Press Club. SCPR also features signature public radio programs from American Public Media, the BBC and Public Radio International. Listeners around the globe can access news, join blogs, download podcasts, as well as hear a live web stream at www.scpr.org.

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