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NBA players union director claims no shots were fired during Capitol siege — and ESPN doesn’t even fact-check her


Shots were fired

Photo by Meg Oliphant/Getty Images

In an interview with ESPN Wednesday night, National Basketball Players Association executive director Michele Roberts responded to news that a mob of Trump supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol by wrongly stating that no shots were fired to quell the riot.

In her statement to the sports news site, she connected the dots between the police response during Wednesday's breach of the Capitol Building and Tuesday's news that no charges would be filed against any of the police officers involved in the Aug. 23 shooting of Jacob Blake, a young black man from Kenosha, Wisconsin, whose confrontation with police sparked over a week of protests in the city.

"Today started yesterday, when the Jacob Blake shooting was being justified, although I'm not sure there was a single human surprised at that finding," Roberts told ESPN. "Every single player that contacted me — or that I contacted — saw the same connection to the Blake shooting being justified."

Roberts then went on to express frustration that police hadn't taken more aggressive — even lethal — action against supporters of President Trump: "We were watching these people essentially committing treason at the Capitol and I have yet to hear about a single shot being fired," she said.

Of course, Roberts' assertion that no shots were fired is inaccurate. Shots were fired by law enforcement personnel that ultimately resulted in the death of a 35-year-old Air Force veteran from San Diego named Ashli Babbitt.

Yet amazingly — even though the article was published nearly four hours after news that Capitol Police had shot one of the rioters had been widely disseminated — ESPN failed to fact-check Roberts' claim. On Thursday morning, a correction or editor's note on the subject was still missing from the publication.

"On a day like this, it's the first thing that comes to mind," Roberts added. "And all I can say is that I'm grateful knowing that hopefully nobody who looks like me is going to Capitol Hill to respond to this, because if they do, you'll see a different response by law enforcement. You know it — and I know it."

It was not immediately clear why ESPN failed to note Roberts' obvious error. TheBlaze has reached out to ESPN requesting that a correction be issued and will update the story with the network's reply.

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