Gulfport police are seeking Ohio man Benjamin Eugene Dagley (pictured) after he allegedly assaulted an NBC reporter on air
An angry man who was caught on camera interrupting an NBC news report about Hurricane Ida is now being sought by police for assault regarding the incident, as it emerged he may have been violating his probation.
The man is seen running up behind Brewster, shouting and lunging at the reporter before the footage cuts away.
After the incident, Gulfport police were called to investigate the alleged assault, and in a release sought the public’s help in finding Dagley.
In addition to two counts of simple assault, he is wanted for disturbance of the peace and violation of emergency curfew for being outside while Ida was still in the area.
After a review of his criminal record, Gulfport police said in a release that they had discovered Dagley is currently on probation for previous charges in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, and that among the conditions of the probation was a restriction on travel.
Footage of the incident shows NBC reporter Shaquille Brewster covering the aftermath of Ida, which had come ashore as a Category 4 hurricane the previous night, when a man, who was identified by police as Dagley, parked his pickup truck and began sprinting at him
Dagley runs up to the crew shouting, ‘Y’all reporting this accurately right?’ as Brewster has his crew shift the camera away from the man
Dagley, however, continues to shout and the segment ends just as he lunges towards Brewster, shouting, ‘Report accurately!’
Although police did not specify the charges, according Cuyahoga County court records and previous news reports, Dagley was arrested in 2017 for drilling holes into storage tanks at an electroplating company he once owned.
The incident sent a security guard to the hospital after he was exposed to the toxic chemicals, according to Cleveland.com, and in 2018 he pleaded guilty to felonious assault, inducing panic and vandalism related to the incident.
Court records show his case was reopened for a possible parole violation on Thursday, and on Tuesday Cuyahoga County called on the local sheriff’s office to issue a warrant for Dagley’s arrest.
Gulfport police say they believe that Dagley is no longer in the Mississippi Gulf Coast area and may be traveling.
They identified his vehicle as a white 2016 Ford F150 with an Ohio license plate number of PJR1745, and are seeking information on his whereabouts.
Brewster tweet shortly after that he and his crew were unharmed in the incident
Footage of Dagley interrupting the broadcast was shared widely on social media, and shows him pulling up in his truck behind Brewster, getting out and sprinting towards him.
Brewster was reporting on how life had begun to return to normal that morning in the areas around where the storm made impact just hours prior.
‘Just a couple of minutes ago people were walking their dogs. They’re back on the beach right now. That’s the sense you’re getting,’ he says as the man approaches from behind.
‘The rain has stopped, the wind is still going there, and I think we have a random person going around.’
Police were seeking the public’s help tracking down Dagley, and shared a photo of his pickup truck (pictured)
Dagley can be heard shouting at the reporter and his camera crew as he approaches, saying: ‘Y’all reporting this accurately right?’
Brewster attempts to continue the segment, asking the crew to turn the camera away from Dagley as he also shifts his position away from him.
Dagley, however, continues shouting, and Brewster is eventually forced to tell anchor Craig Melvin that he will need to cut the broadcast short.
‘Craig I’m gonna toss it back to you, because we have a person who needs a little help right now,’ he says as Dagley lunges at him, shouting, ‘report accurately!’
The broadcast cuts away just as Brewster raises his forearm to defend himself.
Gulfport police had sought the public’s help identifying Dagley after the incident, and they reported in a release that he may have also violated his parole in Ohio by traveling to Mississippi
‘Hey, hey, hey,’ Melvin says.
‘We’re going to check in with Shaq Brewster just to make sure all is well. There’s a lot of crazy out there, a lot of crazy.’
Moments after Brewster tweeted out that he and his crew were alright.
‘Appreciate the concern guys. The team and I are all good!’ he wrote.
MSNBC President Rashida Jones released a statement regarding the incident, calling Brewster a ‘consummate professional.’
‘Like the consummate professional, he did not let someone intimidate him from doing his job. We’re glad he and the team are safe, and we couldn’t be more proud and supportive of their work,’ she said.