U.S. Press Freedom Tracker

WABC reporter Tim Fleischer punched by stranger in NYC

Incident Details

Date of Incident
April 10, 2018
New York, New York


Was the journalist targeted?
November 8, 2023 - Update

Man who punched TV reporter found unfit for trial

The man who punched television reporter Tim Fleischer in the face while Fleischer was reporting in Queens was found unfit for trial, the Queens District Attorney’s Office told the U.S. Press Freedom Tracker via email on Nov. 8, 2023.

Fleischer was filming for WABC-TV in the Far Rockaway neighborhood of Queens in April 2018 when Efram Lacroix ran up and assaulted him without warning. Fleischer was treated for a minor injury at a local hospital, the Daily News reported.

Lacroix was charged with assault and harassment. He was arraigned, according to the Queens District Attorney, but found unfit after a court-ordered psychiatric exam. The case against him was dismissed.

April 10, 2018

Tim Fleischer, a reporter for WABC's Eyewitness News, was punched in the face by a stranger while he was conducting an interview in Queens, New York, on April 10, 2018.

According to the New York Daily News, Fleischer was filming a segment in the Far Rockaway neighborhood of Queens, when a man ran up to him and socked him in the face around noon.

The man was arrested soon after the attack and charged with assault and harassment. Fleischer was taken to a local hospital and received medical treatment for a minor injury.

Fleischer later tweeted about the attack.

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