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  • Amy Goodman

    Amy Goodman | Photo: Democracy Now!

Published 15 October 2016

This is an assault on the First Amendment and press freedom.

A North Dakota prosecutor is seeking to charge Democracy Now! host Amy Goodman for the more serious offense of "rioting" over her filming of Native American protests against the North Dakota pipeline when a number of people were attacked by private security attack dogs. 

Journalist Amy Goodman to Surrender and Fight Dakota Charges

Originally Goodman said she was charged with trespassing over the incident from September. Now North Dakota State Attorney Ladd Ronald Erickson has filednew "riot" charges. 

Goodman said that the charges were changed because they authorities realized they couldn't make the trespassing "stick."

"I wasn’t trespassing, I wasn’t engaging in a riot, I was doing my job as a journalist by covering a violent attack on Native American protesters," said Goodman.

Earlier Goodman said she would return to North Dakota to hand herself in and "vigorously fight the charge as I see it as a direct attack on the First Amendment: Freedom of the press and the public’s right to know."

Goodman said she and her production team filmed live video of “the Dakota Access Pipeline Company’s security guards physically assaulting non-violent, mostly Native American land protectors, pepper spraying them and unleashing attack dogs, one of which was shown with blood dripping from its nose and mouth.”

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