U.S. Press Freedom Tracker

Univision reporter ‘blocked, shoved’ by Miami mayor’s security

Incident Details

Date of Incident
October 6, 2021
Miami, Florida


Was the journalist targeted?

In footage published by WLTV-DT, investigative reporter Erika Carrillo, center in blue, is held back and jostled by a security officer for Miami Mayor Francis Suarez on Oct. 6, 2021, while seeking comment on a scandal involving the city’s police chief.

October 6, 2021

Erika Carrillo, then-investigative reporter for Univision affiliate WLTV-DT, said she was “blocked and shoved” by security for Mayor Francis Suarez when seeking to question him on Oct. 6, 2021.

According to a report published by the outlet, Carrillo waited after a public event at City Hall to ask Suarez his opinion on the controversy surrounding then-Miami Police Department Chief Art Acevedo.

Carrillo reported that at least 13 staff members and security personnel blocked her and her team’s path in an attempt to prevent her from reaching the mayor. In the footage, Carrillo appears to be held back, jostled and pushed on multiple occasions, including as she followed Suarez up a set of stairs.

Nearly a week later, on Oct. 12, the mayor’s talking points from a press conference revealed a handwritten note that read (translated from the Spanish), “Ericka Carillo [sic] — tripped in a limited space.”

Carrillo subsequently wrote on social media that contrary to Suarez’s notes, she didn’t trip or stumble. “I was blocked and shoved by the Mayor’s security when I was trying to ask him about chief [Acevedo],” she wrote.

Dan Shelley, the president and CEO of the Radio Television Digital News Association condemned the incident at the time, writing that it was “unacceptable” that Carrillo was shoved while “merely trying to ask the mayor questions about the police chief’s dismissal.”

Neither Carrillo nor Mayor Suarez’s office responded to later requests for comment.

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