UPDATE 4:40 p.m. — The Police Department on Friday declined to answer any questions regarding Buffington’s arrest. Buffington, reached via Twitter, declined Friday to comment on his arrest. He deferred comment to WBRZ’s administration. Chuck Bark, WBRZ’s News Director, said Friday the station would not be commenting further on the matter.
A comment made by a WBRZ-TV reporter resulted in his arrest early Thursday morning after he was issued a criminal summons for interfering with a law enforcement investigation, a Baton Rouge police report says.
Brett Buffington, 27, of 11959 Nicholson Drive, was booked on counts of interfering with an officer and intimidating a public official.
According to the report, Buffington interfered with a burglary investigation at the 600 block of South Eugene Drive at about 2:30 a.m. Thursday when he disobeyed police requests to leave the area and took photos using a flash, which diverted the officers’ attention and put “their lives in danger.”
Police placed Buffington in the back of a police unit until the area was made safe, the report says. Buffington was then issued a criminal summons and told he was free to leave, to which he told an officer, “Hope you enjoy the rest of your career.”
The report says the officer took the comment to mean that Buffington would have the officer fired, so the reporter was then arrested and booked into the Parish Prison.
Baton Rouge police declined to give any further comment beyond the report. It is unclear why Buffington walked up to the investigation or where he was going.
When Buffington arrived at the scene, the report says, police advised him not to continue any further so he wouldn’t disturb the police dogs.
Police told Buffington a second time to leave the area, but he instead began taking several photos of the officers and the scene using the flash, the report says.
“WBRZ is working with our employee and the Baton Rouge Police Department to determine the full details of what occurred,” said WBRZ News Director Chuck Bark in an email response.