ABC_8.26.jpgA freelance audio operator covering a protest at the site of a proposed mosque and community center near Ground Zero has been reprimanded for his behavior.

Andrea Lafferty, who was a speaker at the mosque opposition rally, first noticed the audio operator questioning a man in the crowd who was holding a sign which read, “No Sharia Here.” On Andrew Brietbart‘s Big Journalism, Lafferty writes:

He was very aggressive, disrespectful and condescending; apparently, he did not like the man’s answers about Shariah and pushed the point: “Why do you feel threatened? What are you afraid of? Why can’t you answer my questions?”

Lafferty then began asking her own questions of the audio op, following him to an ABC News van and snapping several pictures along the way.

In my opinion, the ABC employee’s role at the rally was to provoke a confrontation with participants so ABC News cameras could record it and then use the footage; literally, making news.

ABC News spokesman Jeffrey Schneider tells TVNewser the network has looked into Lafferty’s complaint and agrees that the tech “aggressively” questioned members of the crowd with his personal camera.

Adds Schneider, “He was not instructed to perform interviews or to engage with protesters and was there solely as an audio tech. He has been reprimanded for his behavior at this event.”

Earlier: ABC Audio Op Detained with Pot at Obama Event