U.S. Press Freedom Tracker

Photojournalist Matthew Hopard arrested at Trump inauguration protest

Incident Details

Date of Incident
January 20, 2017

Arrest/Criminal Charge

Arresting Authority
Metropolitan Police Department
  • Rioting
    • Jan. 20, 2017: Charges pending
    • Jan. 30, 2017: Charges dropped
Unnecessary use of force?
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Washington DC police made a number of arrests, including of journalists, after protests against Donald Trump’s inauguration on Jan. 20, 2017, resulted in windows being smashed and other damage. 

— Spencer Platt/Getty Images
January 20, 2017

Matthew Hopard — an independent photojournalist who has published with The New York Times, Fox News, and Business Insider — was arrested on Jan. 20, 2017, while covering protests on the day of President Donald Trump's inauguration.

He was charged with the highest level of offense under Washington D.C.’s law against rioting, which applies when there are injuries as a result of the activity or property damage in excess of $5,000, which can be punished by a maximum of 10 years in jail and fines of up to $25,000.

On Jan. 30, the charges against Hopard were dropped.

The U.S. Press Freedom Tracker catalogues press freedom violations in the United States. Email tips to [email protected].