Toronto Star photographer Rick Madonik was assaulted and harassed while working on a story about housing for refugees on Nov. 12, 2021.
Madonik was photographing near a hotel temporarily housing refugees outside Toronto when security guards approached him and told him he couldn’t take pictures, Madonik told the Canada Press Freedom Project. He said he was the only journalist on the scene at the time.
Madonik was not on hotel property, and he replied that he would continue working. One of the men who had approached Madonik continued to accost him, telling him he couldn’t photograph and had to leave.
The man refused to provide his name, and Madonik said that when he took a photo of the man, he grabbed the camera.
Madonik published a photograph on Twitter showing the man reaching for his camera.
The man left when Madonik took out his phone and started calling the police. Madonik said he didn’t file a police report, and left shortly afterward.