Alaska Dispatch founder and editor Tony Hopfinger was grabbed and handcuffed by a private security detail working for U.S. Senate candidate Joe Miller on Sunday while trying to ask the Fairbanks Republican questions following a town hall meeting at Central Middle School in Anchorage on Sunday.As are a lot of people, I suppose. The Anchorage Daily News has joined the lawsuit against Miller that was initiated by the Dispatch and Fairbanks Daily News-Miner.
Hopfinger was reportedly pressing Miller on whether the candidate had ever been reprimanded for politicking while working at the Fairbanks North Star Borough in 2008. Alaska Dispatch and other media have sued for the release for records related Miller's time at the borough. Various accounts of what happened next generally agree on this course of events:
- Two or three bodyguards told Hopfinger to stop asking questions and to leave the building.
- Hopfinger continued to ask questions while apparently videotaping the candidate.
- Bodyguards told him that if he persisted they would arrest him for trespassing, but refused to identify themselves to Hopfinger.
- Hopfinger asked why he was trespassing, as the event was at a public school. Seconds later, he was then put in arm-bar and later handcuffed and sequestered at one end of a hallway for at least 30 minutes. He was told, "You're under arrest."
- Anchorage Police arrived on the scene shortly after.
Police were still trying to sort things out as this was written.
There will probably be updates. This will be a national story by morning.
Update One: KTUU TV early coverage