Trump campaign manager charged in Florida with battery of Breitbart News reporter

Marcy Oster

(JTA) — Donald Trump’s campaign manager was charged in Florida with battery for allegedly grabbing and forcefully pulling a Breitbart News reporter at a news conference on the same day police released a video apparently corroborating the reporter’s account.

Corey Lewandowski turned himself in to Jupiter police on Tuesday morning, the Palm Beach Post reported.

In a statement Tuesday, Trump said Lewandowski “is absolutely innocent of this charge.”

“He will enter a plea of not guilty and looks forward to his day in court,” the statement said. “He is completely confident that he will be exonerated.”

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The video of the March 8 incident released by police in the South Florida city appears to show Lewandowski pulling and grabbing the reporter, Michelle Fields. The crowd had obscured the incident in previously released videos, according to Reuters. Fields also had tweeted photos of her bruised arm.

Five days after the incident, Fields resigned from Breitbart News, as did Ben Shapiro, the conservative blog’s editor at large, over Breitbart’s refusal to stand behind Fields in her allegations, including publishing a story casting doubt on her account. Breitbart News appeared to side with the Trump campaign over the incident.

Washington Post reporter Ben Terris, who was standing next to Fields at the time of the incident, has corroborated her account.

Shapiro, who is an Orthodox Jew, was a close friend of the Breitbart News founder, the late Andrew Breitbart.

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