KTLA Reporter Kacey Montoya is catching heat for a comment she made while covering the story of a second black man was found dead of a drug overdose in the home of wealthy, white Democratic donor and West Hollywood resident Ed Buck.
A protest had gathered outside Buck’e home and Montoya was covering the story.
Activists expressed yelled and voiced their their dismay about a second black body being found in Buck’s home, Montoya interrupted them to say that the situation was “not about race.”
The Root reports that Jasmyne Cannick, a public-affairs and media-strategy professional who is also an activist in the community, was one of those in attendance.
She said that emotions were high that night in front of Buck’s home.
She said with the situation already tense, Montoya centered herself in the protest and became very vocal and opinionated about what was going on.
Cannick said she “seemed to be making the story about herself and her feelings.
“She started engaging with people in a negative way,” Cannick told The Root.
“Kacey Montoya started arguing with a lot of the people outside. The attention shifted to her and she just wouldn’t let it go,” Cannick said. “There was a lot of back and forth between her and the people in the crowd.”
One activist told her that it was people like her who were enabling Buck and making him feel comfortable, and Montoya responded by saying, “People like me? That’s why people are racist.”
“Her comment is a very odd comment for an unbiased reporter to make,” Cannick said. “Everyone who was out there was understandably upset about the deaths of Gemmel and Timothy. People are confused, they already were after Gemmel, and now we have a second man dead. People are questioning why white privilege matters more than the lives of black people.
“We are all clear that as black people, if we had one person dead from a drug overdose in our home, we would be in trouble. Here is a white man who has now two dead bodies in his home because of drug overdoses, and he is still a free man.
“If you are reporting the story, you can’t be the story. The way Kacey was acting, it seemed as though she was a resident of the building or a friend of Ed Buck’s,” Cannick said.
Montoya nor KTLA have responded to The Root’s report.