BALTIMORE, Md. – CNN’s The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer aired several clips from the HBO series “The Wire” today, claiming they were exclusive footage of the Baltimore riots shot by anchor Don Lemon. In one clip, labeled “Baltimore Rioters Loot Local Businesses,” “The Wire” character ‘Omar’ is seen executing two individuals inside a convenience store with a shotgun. Wolf Blitzer can be heard off camera, presumably believing his mic is off, muttering that Baltimore is becoming “a clusterf*** of terror.”
In another segment titled “Rioters Turn Baltimore into ‘Absolute War Zone,'” CNN aired a clip in which a female character ‘Detective Greggs’ is ambushed and shot during an undercover drug buy, prompting a massive police response. Wolf Blitzer later attributed “The Wire” clip as the primary contributing factor for the mass looting of a Baltimore CVS/Pharmacy.
CNN anchorman Don Lemon, who was reporting live from the streets of Baltimore and is now in police custody, was involved in a series of bizarre events leading up to his arrest earlier. It all began during a live CNN commercial break, at which point Lemon abandoned his camera crew for a “bathroom break.” However, a camera crew with CNN local affiliate WBAL caught sight of Lemon, who was wearing a CNN windbreaker, allegedly hurling Molotov cocktails at a line of riot police.
Moments later, following the commercial break, Don Lemon appeared live on camera, visibly agitated. Addressing viewers, he said, “It’s one thing to be killed by your peers. It’s another thing entirely to be killed by the police.” He then went on to describe the chaos around him, while making a point to avoid eye contact with several passing police officers.
Shortly before his arrest, CNN aired local affiliate WBAL’s footage of Lemon, flanked by rioters, violently engaging police. When asked by Wolf Blitzer to explain the images depicted on screen, Don Lemon entered into a profanity laced rant about fellow anchor Van Jones’ “inability to understand the f***ing situation on the ground.” Lemon then tore off his mic before grabbing a nearby camera tripod and charging toward riot police while shrieking, “Black lives matter!”
The protests in Baltimore are the latest civil unrest attributed to police brutality across the country. Last Sunday, Freddie Grey died after sustaining multiple injuries including the severing of his spine from his neck and three fractured neck vertebrae while in police custody. Six officers have been suspended without pay pending an investigation.