CHICAGO (CBS) — For the first time, we are seeing police body camera video that led to MSNBC being banned from the courtroom in the Kyle Rittenhouse trial in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
During the trial, James J. Morrison was stopped by Kenosha police. They said he ran a red light while driving behind the bus transporting the jurors.READ MORE: Chicago First Alert Weather: Clearing Skies, Wind Chills Bring Sub-Zero Feels-Like Temps
Morrison said he was an MSNBC employee, and was instructed to follow the jurors. At the time, the jury was in deliberations.
The following dialogue transpires on the body cam video:
Officer: “New York told you to follow a vehicle?”
Officer: “Your offices in New York, or what?”READ MORE: Neighbors Help Each Other Dig Out, Plows Get To Work On Side Streets After Lake Effect Snowstorm
Morrison: “That’s right.”
Officer: “How did they know about this vehicle?”
Morrison: “I mean, it was discreet. I wasn’t like, you know, talking to anybody.”
In court afterward, Kenosha County Judge Bruce Schroeder said police suspected Morrison was of trying to take pictures of the jury. In a statement, the network acknowledged Morrison was a freelancer but “never contacted or intended to contact jurors during deliberations, and never photographed or intended to photograph them.”
Schroeder called it a “very extremely serious matter” given that the jury is being kept anonymous. The jurors are transported to and from court in a bus that has its windows covered to prevent the jury from seeing any protests outside the courthouse.
Schroeder banned MSNBC staff from the courthouse for the duration of the trial afterward.MORE NEWS: A Disappointment May Be Coming For St. Patrick's Day: Corned Beef Prices Are Shooting Up, Some Local Butchers Aren't Even Carrying It
Rittenhouse, 18, went on to be acquitted of all charges in the August 2020 shootings that killed Joseph Rosenbaum and Anthony Huber, and wounded Gaige Grosskreutz, during a chaotic night of protests in Kenosha over the police shooting of Jacob Blake. Rittenhouse was 17 at the time of the shootings.