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Arrest warrants issued for man who confronted NBC News reporter during live shot of Hurricane Ida aftermath

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Image source: YouTube screenshot

As NBC News correspondent Shaquille Brewster was reporting on the aftermath of Hurricane Ida during a live video Monday from Gulfport, Mississippi, a white pickup truck appeared in the background, and the driver parked it and began running toward Brewster.

Brewster stepped out the way of the man, who hollered at Brewster and his crew to "report this accurately!"

For another 30 seconds, Brewster continued with his report, then announced that he was turning things back to the network desk because the man, "who needs a little help right now," was becoming more belligerent.

In fact, before the feed cut away, the man walked up to Brewster, screamed in his face, and moved close enough that the reporter had to block him with his arms.

Image source: YouTube screenshot

What happened next?

While Brewster noted on Twitter that all was well with him and his crew following the dust-up, Gulfport Police said in a statement they responded to a complaint about the incident around 1 p.m. Police said the public assisted them in identifying the man, and on Tuesday they issued arrest warrants for Benjamin Eugene Dagley of Wooster, Ohio.

Police said Dagley was charged with two counts of simple assault, one count of disturbing the peace, and one count of violating an emergency curfew.

Police added in their statement that they reviewed Dagley's criminal history and discovered he was on probation for a previous charge in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, and that a travel restriction is one of his probation conditions.

NBC News, citing Ohio court documents, reported that the 54-year-old pleaded guilty to vandalism, inducing panic, and attempted assault in connection to a 2017 commercial break-in. The network noted that Dagley was sentenced to five years' probation and 30 days in jail as well as a $5,000 fine and $10,000 restitution to Cleveland Plating.

The business is an electroplating company Dagley once owned, NBC News added, citing a report by Cleveland.com; Dagley was arrested on suspicion of drilling holes into tanks of dangerous chemicals.

Now what?

Dagley had not been arrested by late Tuesday afternoon, NBC News said, adding that he could not be immediately reached at publicly listed telephone numbers. Police said he has since left the area and was driving a white Ford F-150 with Ohio license plate PJR1745

His ex-wife in Ohio declined to comment, the network added.

Representatives for Cleveland police and Cuyahoga County prosecutors could not be reached for comment Tuesday afternoon and Wednesday morning, NBC News reported, adding that the lawyer who represented Dagley in the aforementioned case could not be immediately reached for comment on Wednesday morning.

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