Last Updated on December 1, 2021
The Kenosha Police Department has released bodycam footage showing the traffic stop of James Joseph Morrison, an NBC News employee who followed a bus containing the Kyle Rittenhouse jury. Morrison ran a red light and committed numerous traffic violations in pursuit of the bus. Judge Bruce Schroeder barred NBC from covering the trial a day after the incident.
According to a police report, Morrison’s vehicle, a Nissan Pathfinder, was trailing “one city block” behind the bus. When the bus later passed through an intersection, Morrison sped through a red light. This was observed by Kenosha police officers in unmarked cars, who asked dispatch to perform a traffic stop on the vehicle with a marked unit.
In the newly released bodycam footage, Morrison is asked whether or not he was following a vehicle by a Kenosha police officer.
“I was trying to see — I was being called by New York, going, maybe these are people you need to follow, but I, I don’t know,” Morrison said. He then identified himself as an NBC employee and said he was instructed to follow the vehicle by his bosses, located in New York. “It was discreet,” Morrison said. “I wasn’t, like, you know, going to talk to anybody or anything. Just trying to find a location, that’s all.”
WATCH 🚨 BodyCam Footage of NBC Producer Following Kyle Rittenhouse Jury Vehicle
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The NBC employee then said he could call the person who told him to follow the bus, which the officer agreed to. Morrison then called the individual and told them that “law enforcement” wanted to speak with them. A woman then identified herself as Irene Byon, a booking producer with NBC. Byon then gave an incoherent explanation as to why Morrison was following the bus.
“We were just trying to respectfully, um, just trying to see if it’s, um, if it’s possible to, um, to try and get any leads about — um — about the, the case, and so we were, we, uh, we were just keeping our distance, um, just to see, like, where, um, people involved in – in the, in the trial, um, are positioned.”
The officers then advised NBC to stop following the vehicle. “We can’t afford anything crazy happening, putting people in dangerous positions,” the officer told Byon. “We’re very sorry,” Byon replied. Morrison was later photographed and cited for a red-light violation. “Ultimately, there was no arrest for jury tampering because police interrupted any opportunity to do so,” said Kenosha Police Lt. Joseph Nosalik told Law&Crime in an email.