A producer/reporter working for the Brian Ross investigative unit at ABC News was roughed up Tuesday as he tried to get an interview with a West Virginia energy company executive. The unidentified producer, DV camera in hand, was trying to get an interview with Don Blankenship, the CEO of Massey Energy. Blankenship is accused of having a too-cozy relationship with the Chief Justice of the West Virginia Supreme Court, Elliott “Spike” Maynard.
According to the Charleston Daily Mail, there are photos of the two men together on the French Riviera in 2006. The pictures were taken “while Massey had a multimillion-dollar appeal pending before the court.”
Blankenship allegedly told the producer, “If you’re going to take pictures of me, you are liable to get shot.” Insiders tell us Massey then tried to grab the camera and ripped the shirt of the 28-year-old producer. Blankenship told the Daily Mail he was bruised and planned to see a doctor. He didn’t rule out a lawsuit against ABC.
Ross’s story is expected to air Monday on World News and on Nightline.
• Related: The Blotter account of what happened…