Photojournalist Blinded in One Eye While Reporting on Protests Is Suing the City of Minneapolis, Using Pictures She Took of Police as Evidence

Photojournalist Blinded in One Eye While Reporting on Protests Is Suing the City of Minneapolis, Using Pictures She Took of Police as Evidence

During the protests in Minneapolis last month, photojournalist Linda Tirado was left blind in one eye after being hit by a foam bullet used by police. After initially making light of the situation, she has now decided to pursue legal action against the City of Minneapolis, and is citing the last images she took of police before she was shot at as evidence.

Tirado says she was clearly identifiable as press, wearing her press credentials as expected, when the police fired shots at her. PetaPixel shared court documents which detail that Tirado “stepped in front of the protesting crowd and aimed her professional Nikon camera at the police officers to take a picture of the police line,” before the police “[shot] her in her face with foam bullets.” The bullet destroyed her protective eyewear, leaving her eye in such a state, it was beyond saving.

Tirado is suing the City of Minneapolis, Minneapolis Chief of Police Mederia Arradondo, Lieutenant Robert Kroll, Public Safety Commissioner John Harrington, State Patrol Colonel Matthew Langer, and four other unnamed officers, questioning why she was targeted despite wearing everything that was required of her.

She accuses the police of using “excessive, unprovoked, unreasonable force to prevent Plaintiff from exercising her constitutional rights was intended to cause imminent harmful and offensive contact.”

She has submitted to the court the last photos she took before the attack, one of which shows one of the officers aiming a gun at her. She is seeking a number of things, namely compensation for work she may now miss out on, and financial aid for her legal expenses.

Lead image: ev on Unsplash.

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A 28-year-old self-taught photographer, Jack Alexander specialises in intimate portraits with musicians, actors, and models.

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She should get more than a payout from this. The man who shot her should be facing criminal charges - but even now with all this supposed reform (which to me sounds like a flock of geese making noise and little else), he's probably going to get by with administrative duty or whatever.

Unprovoked assault. I hope she wins, although nothing will bring her eye back.

Not what the photos show. Ridiculing her is more than a little disrespectful.

This almost implies that cops are forces of nature that act without regard to consequence. While the reality of who they are may be close to that, it isn't exactly how it's meant to be and on a fundamental level, we are all supposed to be responsible for our own actions.

This applies far more to a cop who is supposedly trained to handle escalated situations but fired a nonlethal weapon without the need to do so than it does to a journalist who was simply doing journalism. Besides, it isn't easy to hit someone in the eye, you know. He had to have been aiming at her head regardless of who he thought she was and what he thought she was doing.

Also, it's funny how cops get excuses and administrative duty and whatever when they behave in ways that would be diagnosed as symptoms of mental disorders and possibly lead to "involuntary commitment" with other people...

What a literal manchild. Work on that reading comprehension - you'll get there someday.

Nice mirroring mate. I ain't getting paid enough to deal with you.

You're absolutely correct. Rubber bullets injure people. When their use is authorized, it's understood that people will get hurt. If everyone hit by a bullet can sue, police would be unable to end a riot.

It's hard to know exactly what happened without being there at the moment, but these "peaceful" protests became violent and destructive quickly.

On one side you had rioters throwing rocks, bottles, and even molotovs at the police while looting, vandalizing, and committing arson. On the other you have police shooting tear gas and rubber bullets. Numerous civilians and police have suffered injuries in this chaos.

To me these photos don't prove she was the target, but simply that she put herself in the line of fire. It's absolutely foolish to put yourself in the middle of a chaotic and violent situation and expect a press pass to make you safe. No one or weapon has perfect accuracy. It's hard to prove whether she was the target or standing near/in front of the target.

Personally I nearly got hit with a tear gas canister at close range, and I got tear gased several times. I don't blame the police because I was dumb enough to stand between them and rioters destroying my city.

Tragic she lost an eye, she probably deserves a payout and the courts will decide, but there is no denying she put herself at risk to get photos.

You send police into peaceful protests and you can guarantee violence. The police will turn a peaceful protest into a violent one.

This is going to get thrown out.

I deliberately walked into a riot, ignored an order to clear the street, was distracted taking photos I hoped would make me money, got in the way of some very stressed-out police, and was accidentally injured. So naturally I'm suing everyone in sight. Is this a great country or what?

Not to mention the city wide curfew she clearly ignored.

When covering riots, I don't understand why reporters, journalists, etc don't where safely goggles. There's rocks, bricks, glass, rubber bullets, and all kinds of debris flying all over the place.

She was wearing safety glasses; the bullet smashed the lens.

Apparently, the ones she had on weren't made to even withstand rubber/foam bullets.

I was referring to these type of goggles. It can take a shotgun shot. And, they're only $34.

Contributory negligence aside; rubber bullets are not meant to be fired at people's heads.

Just because she got hit in the face doesn't mean they were aiming for her face.

Light projectiles have a tendency to aim high, unfortunately. And I doubt police have enough practice and a special gun that has a calibrated sight for this ammunition.

It is more likely they were aiming for her head than not.

No, it's more likely they aimed center mass. It's much easier to aim for.

So, I'm wondering at this time, exactly what the point of this little exchange we have going? Is this where we posture and try to establish intellectual dominance over the other?

They shot her in the head. She was blinded in one eye.

But sure, let's argue about subjective intent.

And, therein lies the problem. You want to go with "they shot her in the head" because it sounds dramatic and sensational. Makes it sound intentional. Versus, going with, "she got shot in the head" which sounds more plausible that it was not intentional.

Funny thing, police and other people who are in positions of power, should be held to a higher standard.

You idiots just don't grasp that.

Let's not forget that now police are being told not to kill unarmed blacks, they are resigning.

No, I am not sympathetic to your arguments. There is no "but"; "but" coupled with militarisation of your police got you to this point.

However, I am amused at the fact your garbage nation is disintegrating.

Well well, looky what we have here. Lol, you started off well-mannered until you couldn't get your way, then turn hostile. You're just like those "peaceful" protesters.

Oh, that's cute, you have been sucked in by the narrative constructed by a wealthy elite; who have convinced the majority that violence prima facie invalidates the position of the perpetrator(s).

The irony is, the state maintains power by virtue of holding a monopoly on power; further, violence is a perfectly legitimate political tool; why do you think the Second Amendment follows the first - honestly, I don't for an instant believe you have considered these issues, about the best you can come up with is "violence bad" whilst concurrently defending violence perpetrated by the executioners of the state. You are too stupid to even realise the inconsistencies in your own position.

Oi, stop being such a bloody wanker. Pull head out your ass. Or, at least take a peek through the crack once in a while.

Let me break it down in ABC's for you.

I introduced a number of complex and nuanced issues, and your response was precisely as expected.


You're just another moron with a room temperature IQ.

What you introduced was evident of some derangement syndrome. Just the fact you believe police were resigning because they are not allowed to kill unarmed blacks. That's a whole new level of imbecile right there. I'm not going to entertain grievances of some looney loner that most likely spends their afternoons at the park feeding pigeons then hops on a photography site just to vent.

Oh dear. One assumes you didn't listen to the podcast.

But since you brought photography into it; the Internet is full of people who shoot tits and ass to formula, and there is absolutely nothing intetesting about your images.

Since you brought the internet into it, it's full of insecure fragile nutters that create fake/empty profiles. No doubt you feel like it gives you a sense of courage and invincibility to vent and troll through anonymity because you're mentally and emotionally weak. Go back to feeding pigeons.

That may or may not be true (you will never have sufficient information to draw an inference either way); however, your lame attempt at getting under my skin does not negate my previous comment.

I would add that the guy who retweets Donald Trump is probably the one with issues.

Does it bother you knowing your images have no particular artistic merit? The really funny part is you take photos of women (subject matter which easily accrues tens or hundreds of thousands of followers on IG), but 282 posts and you've only accrued 677 followers since 2015.

No pithy retort?

How disappointing.

It doesn't matter if you are clearly identifiable as press wearing credentials. If the police say move your ass, then move your ass. Don't stand around when the police are advancing. If you want to get a picture then stay far back and use a zoom lens. You are not special because you are a photographer. It's not your constitutional right to make the police's job more difficult than it already is.

It’s no different than going into a combat zone, shit happens. She put herself into a situation where she knew she could be hurt. Would she be suing if a protester hurt her? Doubt it. As far as a “Journalists “ .......