Via balloon juice, this alleged assault on a live tv reporter should be embarrassing for all involved. Ashley Taylor, a tv reporter in Myrtle Beach was doing a live broadcast when a man grabs the microphone and acts like an idiot. He is later arrested on assault charges.
The video is worth watching to see how absurdly earnest this reporter talks about the need for victims advocates in assault cases after this experience now that she knows “just what it is like” to be a crime victim.
It is certainly possible that this minor jostling could technically be considered an assault charge under the law. In South Carolina, the law states that any attempt to injure a person is a simple assault. That is probably a significant stretch.
No doubt this reporter was momentarily startled by this man’s fairly idiotic behavior. But it is an insult to real victims of traumatic assaults for this reporter to put herself in this category.
As this case shows, assault prosecutions can be extremely selective and capricious. If the victim is a prominent person or complains loudly, and the police happen to be nearby, sometimes an arrest is made and a person is prosecuted is cases like this that are objectively silly.
Hopefully cooler heads will prevail, and this case will be dropped, or the charges reduced to something more trivial and appropriate for what actually happened. But if the victim and the prosecution insist on going forward, it many take a good lawyer and a reasonable judge to get this charge reduced.
But it is not hard to imagine this charge sticking. We will see if this reporter wants to continue seeing herself as a crime victim.