Twitter Explodes Over Baltimore Activist’s Dramatic Arrest On Live TV (VIDEO)

Social media users on Tuesday night demanded to know what happened to a student activist after his arrest was captured in a CNN live shot.

CNN’s camera showed the organizer, later identified as 21-year-old Morgan State University student Joseph Kent, walking back and forth in front of a police line with his hands up at about 10:40 p.m. local time — 40 minutes after the start of a citywide curfew.

“Everybody has to disperse, everybody has to leave,” Kent said.

The live shot then showed an armored police vehicle driving up the street. When the vehicle approached the police line, a number of officers in riot gear suddenly rushed toward Kent. The vehicle obscured the camera’s view of what happened next, though, and Kent was gone by the time the vehicle rolled out of the shot.

The sudden nature of that visual led Twitter users to characterize the incident as a “kidnapping”:

CNN anchor Chris Cuomo explained what the camera didn’t catch.

“He wasn’t almost hit by that armored vehicle,” Cuomo said. “They drove the vehicle up and when it got close enough to create a wedge they ran out and grabbed him, pinned him against that and arrested him.”

The CNN anchor added that police shot pepper bullets at Kent the first time he walked up the street with his hands in the air. Kent then came around and told the media to disperse from the area, Cuomo said.

Steve Beatty, a local lawyer who tweeted that he was a “concerned citizen” who did not represent Kent, confirmed that the activist was in police custody:

Kent was apparently scheduled for a radio interview Wednesday morning:

The activist also played a prominent role last fall during Baltimore’s protests of the Ferguson, Missouri grand jury decision.

“Everyone knows me at Morgan already, organizing and making sure everything running the correct way and peaceful and everything like that,” Kent told the Baltimore City Paper in November. “So, everybody already knows I’m going to do things the right way, so when everybody else and community people and civilians and people who joined and saw that the Morgan students were looking up to it, before you knew it, the whole city was on my back and I was just carrying the whole city.”

Watch below:

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