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A video has surfaced on Twitter that shows conservative journalist Andy Ngo laughing as members of the far-right group Patriot Prayer plan an attack on anti-fascist patrons at a Portland bar. The incident, which happened in May, is now at the center of a lawsuit.
ANDY NGO UPDATE:— Respectable Lawyer (@RespectableLaw) August 23, 2019
Amazing new footage emerges from a lawsuit showing Andy Ngo laughing as Patriot Prayer members plan an attack on patrons of a local bar. pic.twitter.com/cLNeTZHxcs
The antifa members were having a peaceful May Day celebration when Patriot Prayer members came to protest, according to the Portland Mercury. Several fights broke out, and now the bar is suing the Patriot Prayer members for allegedly causing the riot. Ngo covered the event on Twitter and blamed the brawl on antifa.
Portland-based journalist Alex Zielinski posted a video, which is part of the court documents in the ongoing lawsuit and appears to negate Ngo’s claims.
“This clip, shot right before Patriot Prayer arrived at [the bar] Cider Riot on May Day, is the clearest evidence I’ve seen supporting the claim that PP … were intent on instigating a fight that afternoon,” Zielinski tweeted.
This clip, shot right before Patriot Prayer arrived at Cider Riot on May Day, is the clearest evidence I've seen supporting the claim that PP & leader Joey Gibson were intent on instigating a fight that afternoon. https://t.co/G1iM9XUDi2— Alex Zielinski (@alex_zee) August 22, 2019
In the video, Patriot Prayer members discuss what weapons they have, talk about the direction of the wind to avoid getting pepper-sprayed, and some make phone calls to request for backup.
Ngo is present in the video and can even be seen laughing at certain points.
“[Ngo] smiles as they joke about being outnumbered. There’s no way he couldn’t know the group was planning on instigating violence against people at Cider Riot,” Zielinski tweeted.
A note: Right-wing writer @MrAndyNgo is with the PP group the entire time as they plan out their attack. He smiles as they joke about being outnumbered. There's no way he couldn't know the group was planning on instigating violence against people at Cider Riot.— Alex Zielinski (@alex_zee) August 22, 2019
In Ngo’s coverage of the riots, he posted misleading videos that crop out violent actions from Patriot Prayer members, putting the blame fully on antifa. Since then, videos have emerged that discredit several of his tweets.
“As more people send me clips, it becomes clear that Andy’s work is plagued by these dishonest edits. For example, in this clip, he edited out some goons stomping a man’s head, and did it with a sloppy looking jump-cut in his own clip,” Twitter user @RespectableLaw wrote.
But as @imminentbulb pointed out, a full video shows the woman was attacked immediately prior to the start of Andy’s clip. If you listen to Andy’s clip, you can even hear one Patriot Prayer member frantically apologizing for the attack on her.https://t.co/PpI3K9beHk— Respectable Lawyer (@RespectableLaw) August 23, 2019
As more people send me clips, it becomes clear that Andy’s work is plagued by these dishonest edits. For example, in this clip, he edited out some goons stomping a man’s head, and did it with a sloppy looking jump-cut in his own clip.https://t.co/eTRd8QPYc1— Respectable Lawyer (@RespectableLaw) August 23, 2019
Ngo is relatively new to the media scene. He is known for videos of political clashes in the streets of Portland and for a recent attack by an antifa supporter on June 29, which reportedly sent Ngo to the hospital.
Some Twitter users–like Charlotte Clymer, the communications director for the Human Rights Campaign–have said that Ngo purposely instigates fights with left-wing protesters in order to get publicity.
“Violence is completely wrong … but I’m also not going to pretend that this wasn’t Ngo’s goal from the start,” Clymer tweeted.
Andy Ngo intentionally provokes people on the left to drive his content. Being attacked today on video taken by an actual journalist (because Ngo is definitely not) is the greatest thing that could have happened to his career.— Charlotte Clymer🏳️🌈 (@cmclymer) June 30, 2019
You know it. I know it. He knows it. We all know it.
Update 7:37am CT, Aug 27: On Monday, Aug. 26, several reporters noticed Andy Ngo was no longer listed on Quillette’s website as an editor and that Ngo removed Quillette from his bio.
Many speculated it was a result of the videos of Ngo with Patriot Prayer.
Andy Ngo just removed Quillette from his bio...— Caroline Orr (@RVAwonk) August 27, 2019
... the same day it was revealed that Ngo and the violent far-right group Patriot Prayer had an "understanding" that he would protect them and they'd protect him.
(h/t @Avi_Bueno) pic.twitter.com/WDJRST8EYJ
Quilllette founder Claire Lehmann denied that was the case, however, saying Ngo’s exit from the site had been long planned.
I want to address unfounded speculation about @MrAndyNgo's departure from @Quillette: Andy has been off work for @Quillette since July, after sustaining a traumatic brain injury. He is now moving onto bigger & better projects, & we wish him all the best in his future endeavours.— Claire Lehmann (@clairlemon) August 27, 2019
Sierra Juarez is a freelance journalist and fact-checker based in Mexico. She most enjoys writing about human rights and politics and working in audience engagement. Her work has appeared in the Texas Tribune, the Austin American–Statesman, and the San Antonio Current.