Person of interest sought after journalist seriously injured during Asheville protest, police say

Person of interest sought after journalist seriously injured during Asheville protest, police say
Person of interest sought after journalist seriously injured during Asheville protest, police say (Source: Asheville police)

ASHEVILLE, N.C. (WYFF) - An Asheville journalist is being treated at Mission Hospital Thursday after being injured while covering protests about the decision not to charge officers in the death of Breonna Taylor, according to hospital officials.

Hospital representative Nancy Lindell said Chad Nesbitt received a traumatic brain injury Wednesday night and is in serious but stable condition.

She said he will be closely monitored in the coming days.

Nesbitt is owner of a Facebook page called Skyline News.

The last post on the page is a livestreamed video from Wednesday night and shows protesters surrounding him with open umbrellas covering some of their faces.

Asheville police said the incident happened about 10 p.m. Spruce Street near the Roger McGuire Green at Pack Square Park.

On several occasions, Nesbitt can be heard on the livestream telling the protesters to “back away.”

With less than 30 seconds left in the stream, Nesbitt can be heard says, “You’re impeding my way of traffic, sir. I’m trying to walk down the sidewalk.”

Moments later, Nesbitt says, “Excuse me, don’t touch me,” and proceeds to explain that protesters have stopped in front of the Asheville Police Department on the corner of Spruce Street.

He then can be heard saying, “Nobody’s touching your stuff...” and then the camera viewfinder flies up and the video ends abruptly.

Police are now looking for a person of interest in the case.

They released a photo of a man wearing a gray hooded sweatshirt, a baseball cap, and a dark-colored face covering. He stands approximately 6 feet tall.

Anyone with information about the identity of the man or his whereabouts is asked to call police at 828-252-1110.

Police are also asking anyone with information or digital evidence of the incident to contact them immediately.

Nesbitt’s wife and daughter thanked the community for the outpouring of support and prayers, Lindell said.