Citizen journalist captures attention of mayor, police chief in midst of protests

SEATTLE – City officials have turned to local citizen journalists to learn how to reduce confrontations between police and peaceful demonstrators.

Seattle Police Chief Carmen Best met with a man Wednesday night who has been covering the ongoing protest for several days.

Citizen journalist Omari Salisbury works with Converge Media and Africatown.

He captured tense moments between protestors and police Monday night. Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan says she watched a replay of the clip where pepper spray, flash bangs and gas canisters had been unleashed on a large crowd.

“I was able to view that pink umbrella video,” said Durkan during a Thursday press conference. She asked the Office of Police Accountability to “ensure they could investigative any individual officer actions in which there was a question about their use of force.”

By Wednesday night, Salisbury had been invited to meet with Seattle Police Chief Carmen Best to livestream their conversations from the police department’s side of barricades.

Salisbury said often times protestors don’t always have the same vantage point as officers.

“We take the camera so protestors can see,” he said. “It is a totally different view.”

Best said the city’s officers would continue monitoring protests and meet peace with peace.