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Ferguson Police Say They May Arrest More Journalists

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RON JOHNSON
FERGUSON, UNITED STATES - AUGUST 18: Captain Ron Johnson of the Missouri Highway Patrol speaks to media during a protest on August 18, 2014 for Michael Brown, who was killed by a police officer on August 9 in Ferguson, United States. Captain Ronald Johnson of the Missouri State Highway Patrol, makes statements to reporters as the protests continue in Ferguson. Some of the protesters were detained by the police during the clashes on Monday. The 18 year-old Brown was killed in a confrontation wit | Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The man in charge of policing Ferguson warned journalists on Monday night that they could very well continue to be arrested.

Up to 11 reporters have been arrested or detained by police in the Missouri town, which has seen days of protests and violence following the police killing of Michael Brown.

Speaking at a press conference, Missouri State Highway Patrol Captain Ron Johnson told reporters that, if police can't tell that they're members of the media, they could be detained.

Journalist Matthew Keys recorded Johnson's comments.

"When officers are running around, we're not sure who's a journalist and who's not," he said. "Yes, if I see somebody with a $50,000 camera on their shoulder, I'm pretty sure. But some journalists are walking around, and all you have is a cellphone because you're from a small media outlet. Some of you may just have a camera around your neck. So yes, we may take some of you into custody. But when we do take you into custody, and we have found out you're a journalist, we've taken the proper action."

Johnson's comments came before The Intercept's Ryan Deveraux was detained and held for hours in Ferguson. The website said that Deveraux and another reporter had their hands up and were shouting, "Press!" when they were taken into custody — a far cry from the situation that Johnson said would lead to a reporter's arrest.

(h/t Politico)

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