CalCoastNews reporter assaulted while filming looters in Los Angeles

June 4, 2020

Josh Friedman

By CCN Staff

A group of looters assaulted and robbed CalCoastNews reporter Josh Friedman in downtown Los Angeles early Sunday morning as he was reporting on the protests and riots in the LA area following the killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer.

Shortly after midnight, Friedman was filming looters pillaging a Walgreens near the intersection of Hope and 7th streets near the financial district and live-streaming the action on YouTube. While Friedman walked across the street to film looting at a Rite Aid on the opposite corner, a woman began yelling, “He’s recording all y’all. Get the camera from him.”

A group of young men surrounded Friedman, who was wearing a press pass.

“ Sir, I’m press. Sir, I’m press,” Friedman screamed out as he shoved his phone in his pocket.

The men ganged up on Friedman, punching him and kicking him. Friedman suffered multiple blows to the face, head and body, leaving him bloodied and bruised. In the end, Friedman had a bloody lip, a cut on the side of his head, and bloody hand.

The attackers stole Friedman’s batters helmet he wore to protect his head from bottle and rubber bullets and two cell phone battery packs he was carrying. They did not steal Friedman’s cell phone, which live-streamed audio of the whole incident.

On Saturday afternoon, Friedman filmed protestors marching on city streets. As agitators and looters joined the crowd, Friedman filmed hundreds of individuals looting businesses and fires burning in Los Angeles’s Fairfax district.

Friedman says he acknowledges he is taking risks by covering the protests and particularly looting, but there is a great deal of importance to the reporting.

“When there are nationwide protests and riots happening that are impacting the lives of millions of Americans and are the focus of public discourse, it is crucial to have journalists documenting what is occurring — and doing so not just from helicopters and from behind police lines, but on the ground, in the heart of the action,” Friedman said.

During his coverage, Friedman has discovered that large protests attract instigators of violence and looters. The looters break windows, pillage businesses and set fires while protesters occupy the attention of police. The instigators throw objects at police lines, sometimes prompting officers to fire rubber bullets at peaceful protesters, Friedman said.

Vigilant Citizen

Thank you Josh! You understand the true nature of journalism. Your commitment to truth and accuracy are so very honorable. Please be careful and know that you are a hero in every aspect of the word.


Stay out of riot situations. Don’t even go as an observer, you can get pushed into the melee.


Shocking but not surprising. Be well Josh, stay safe.

When will we learn who’s paying the agitators, providing their transportation and the bricks delivered to city streets?


Saw pic of the brick stacks. They were neatly stacked, warning cones, looked like construction projects.


Sorry to hear this, but hope it won’t dampen the reporter’s enthusiasm for a career in journalism. Now, more than ever, the fourth estate needs brave and intrepid souls to report what is going on.

George Garrigues

A really kind and uplifting thought. Thanks!


For many decades a close friend has owned multiple properties on J st in Sacramento .If he walks the sidewalks at night last 3 years… Sac PD officers show up on bicycles and escort him to his properties as he’s been escorted there is always chants of kill whitey from folks outside the bars .My friend owns multiple firearms and does not request the PD escorts .When he has detained criminals waiting for PD to show up …the criminals switch the script and call PD claiming he’s attacking people .Its a daily and nightly adventure to live in big cities these days and getting worse everyday


You do not go into large cities at night by yourself in united states being a white person let alone filming crime ….For many years now it has been this way .People who do not live or frequent large cities find out this is very true .Lucky he’s alive .Large cities make Santa Maria look like a retirement village .I warn people all the time …but usually they just shrug and stumble on into the city at the minimum they get to leave the city in the same car they drove into the city in …. Big cities are not SLO county cities .. Too bad this reporter had to learn this by experience but he’s lucky he’s breathing


However true this is—I’ve lived in these cities, east, south, and west, and don’t disagree—why do you think it’s this way? If you could trace the course of American history, what would you deduce is the reason?


Perhaps it would be insightful to see how certain demographics behave in other parts of the world. You might find a pattern.


Ten years ago I road a chartered bus to a high school CIF football game at Junipero Sierra High School in Gardena, CA. Everyone on the bus was told, do not leave the campus.

George Garrigues

Best wishes to this working reporter.


How terrible…but don’t worry the Los Angeles mayor knelt with the “protesters” so everything will be ok now…and when he defunds the LAPD this is going to magically stop….like ferry dust in the moonlight…


It sounds like he received a dose of Antifa. The true modern fascist group of hate and destruction. I’m glad you lived to us about it. God bless you.


Allegations against Antifa are simply a distraction from Mr. Trump. The FBI has found no evidence that Antifa, not even an organized group, has been linked to any of the protests or ensuing violence.


Go ahead and keep living with your blinders on. These fascist have been around long before President Trump was elected. They grew unchecked through the Hussein Obama Regime. I know it doesn’t fit the narrative that you and some of the media want to promote. Tell me, who has been responsible for the death of several officer’s, the 70 year old security guarding(retired policeman) his friends store, and the many that have been maimed by bricks, concrete and fireworks? Not to mention all of the businesses destroyed, Oh, that’s right, the “peaceful protesters”. Many of those victims, do I dare say it, were black. Please go blow smoke up someone else’s ass.


So, I guess that’s a hard no on believing the FBI.


Well buddy, if you look at their recent history over the last 31/2 years, a “hard no” would be very appropriate. Can you say James Comey and his other high level FBI comrades are believable with what they have done?


But, wasn’t that the point of Trump’s firing of Comey, McCabe, Strzok, et al—to root out the deep staters? Aren’t the current leaders of the FBI Trump appointees? I know Wray is. Why should we not believe them now?


Given your reference source, BusinessInsider (a noticeably left leaning publication) , it isn’t too surprising that you are unaware of ANTIFA’s violent activities. Please read more widely.


While I certainly agree that the unorganized thugs known as Antifa are dangerous, I am simply saying that law enforcement has ZERO evidence linking them to the violence that has marred some of these protests.

Moreover, Mr. Friedman does not mention Antifa in his reporting. The miscreants and petty thieves who roughed him up appear to be just that, an unorganized rabble that was out for a freebie. I would have thought that if it had been Antifa, his wounds would have been worse.

LE, however, does have evidence of right-wing extremists, namely the “boogaloo bois,” inciting violence and some being arrested for planning violence in Las Vegas.

Please provide your sources that prove me wrong.


You’re kidding, right?

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