WATCH: Gunmen Foiled Trying to Rob Camera Crew — During Interview of Crime Prevention Chief at City Hall


A local camera crew endured an attempted robbery on Monday afternoon, which is not the most outrageous thing to have ever happened, but given the setting and context? It may say more about the current spike in crime that the nation is seeing than anything else.

Oakland, California’s Department of Violence Prevention Chief Guillermo Cespedes was being interviewed on the steps of Oakland City Hall by a news crew with the Bay Area’s NBC affiliate KNTV. But the interview was interrupted by an attempted armed robbery, the video of which you can see above.

Writing for East Bay Times, George Kelly reports:

Just after 6 p.m., police said in a statement that two suspects approached a cameraperson filming during an interview at 3:09 p.m. before trying to take the camera at gunpoint.

After a scuffle ensued, “the armed security officer pulled his firearm out, and directed the suspects to leave. The suspects immediately left the area without the camera,” and were still outstanding, police said.

Officers, including a police spokesperson, responded to the scene during an investigation. There were no injuries, police said.

“Please be advised that the suspects are still outstanding,” police said. “We encourage everyone to be vigilant of their surroundings and report all crimes. Please stay safe.”

In a statement, an Oakland city spokesperson confirmed that Department of Violence Prevention Chief Guillermo Cespedes was the person being interviewed outside City Hall.

To add insult to injury, the interview with Cespedes followed a press conference led by Oakland police Chief LeRonne Armstrong to lament a City Council decision to divert $18 million in funding for the police that had been sought for violence-prevention efforts proposed by Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf.

Defund the Police” has become a political wedge issue used by both progressives and conservatives but for very different reasons, and there is no denying the spike in crime that has followed the introduction of that particular political phrase. However, the debate over causality or correlation will surely rage on cable news opinion programming for months to come.

Watch above via KNTV.

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