Greg Gianforte, a candidate in a House special election in Montana, became the political story of the day (if not the week, since there is some competition) when he allegedly body-slammed a journalist to the ground Wednesday.
CNN called it a choke slam.
The Republican candidate was charged with misdemeanor assault after reports about the incident exploded across social media and onto national media. The special election, being held today, is to replace former Rep. Ryan Zinke, who is now President Trump’s interior secretary.
A pivotal voice after the alleged attack was Alicia Acuna, a Fox News reporter who witnessed the incident. She published her account on Fox News’ politics website site Wednesday night.
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“Gianforte grabbed Jacobs by the neck with both hands and slammed him into the ground behind him,” wrote Acuna, who worked for two years in Fresno at KSEE in the mid-1990s. “Faith, Keith and I watched in disbelief as Gianforte then began punching the reporter.”
She is referencing field producer Faith Mangan and photographer Keith Railey, who were also on the scene.
Acuna joined Fox News as a national reporter in 1997. Prior to that she was a co-anchor and reporter at KSEE and part of the best evening news team (along with Brent Schweigert and Sean Boyd) in a Fresno Bee “Rate the Anchors” poll.