A news reporter who was robbed at gunpoint during a live TV hit outside a soccer stadium in Ecuador has shared footage of his ordeal online.
Diego Ordinola was reporting for DirecTV Sports from outside the Isidro Romero Carbo Monumental Stadium in Guayaquil—Ecuador’s largest city—on February 12, when a routine TV hit was brusquely interrupted by a man holding a gun.
Wearing a baseball cap and a face mask, the robber approached Ordinola and pointed the gun at him, while reportedly demanding he handed over his phone and wallet. The thief then turned the weapon towards the cameraman and the film crew, with a member of the latter handing over his phone.
The terrifying exchange was recorded as the camera focused on Ordinola kept rolling. The footage was later uploaded the on the reporter’s Twitter account.
“We can’t even work quietly, this happened at 1pm outside the Monumental Stadium,” Ordinola captioned the video, which has been seen almost 370,000 times at the time of writing.
“The @PoliceEcuador promised to find these criminals.”
The robber scurried away after obtaining the phone, with footage showing him jump on the back of a motorbike before swiftly fleeing the scene.
The robbery video was shared thousands of times and Ordinola received several messages of support, both from colleagues and the general public.
“Thank you all for your messages of solidarity, I appreciate it very much,” he wrote on Twitter. “Let’s unite to eradicate crime in Ecuador.”
Isidro Romero Carbo Monumental Stadium, located in the the parish of Tarqui in northern Guayaquil, is the largest stadium in Ecuador.
The home of Barcelona SC hosted five games at the 1993 Copa America, including the final in which Argentina defeated Mexico 2-1.
In 2019, the U.S. Department of State Travel Advisory described Guayaquil as having a “serious risk of crime”.
A report from the Overseas Security Advisory Council noted that while the number of home invasions and armed robberies decreased in the previous year, the amount of car thefts and homicides increased.
Rates of apprehension and conviction of criminals remained very low “due to limited police and judicial resources”.
The report urged visitors to “exercise extreme caution in downtown Guayaquil and the southern part of the city”, particularly in tourist hotspots which “are targeted by criminals”, despite being well patrolled by the local police force.
TV Reporter Robbed at Gunpoint Live on Air – Newsweek