Video: Firefighter in altercation with man videoing patient

After a verbal confrontation, he allegedly grabbed the photojournalist's arm and pushed him backward as a patient was being moved to the ambulance at Comic Con


SAN DIEGO — A member of the San Diego Fire Rescue Department angrily confronted and allegedly grabbed the arm of a photojournalist and pushed him backward as he was filming an ambulance crew wheeling a patient out of the 2015 Comic Con.

The video, by J.C. Playford, cuts away from an interview when an ambulance cot with a female patient is wheeled onto the sidewalk outside the Hard Rock Café Tuesday night. Playford suspected that the woman, who had her hands over face, was a celebrity so he began recording the woman and ambulance crew, reported PINAC

The EMS provider at the rear of the cot is heard asking Playford to stop filming. "You can't tell me what to do. She is in public," Playford said.

He continues filming as the patient is moved to the ambulance, still with her hands over her face. Just after shining the bright camera light on the patient's face Playford is confronted by a San Diego firefighter.

“He ran up, grabbed my camera and my arm at the same time and knocked me backward,” Playford said in a telephone interview with Photography is Not a Crime.

According to Playford he kneed the firefighter in the groin. Another San Diego firefighter intervenes and separates the two men.

Playford has been in other altercations with public officials over his right to record. His attorney, Edward Peruta, contacted the fire department.

In a letter Deputy Chief Stephen Ricci told Peruta that the matter was under investigation and asked to be provided a copy of Playford's video of the incident.

Playford said the female in the gurney was from the Game of Thrones HBO television series.

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