CNN editing turns interview with Milwaukee victim’s sister on its head, sparks anger online

CNN has faced a public backlash for editing an interview with the sister of a Milwaukee police shooting victim to make it look as if she was calling for peace and calm, when the full video shows her angry calls for people to take action.

Sherelle Smith, sister of Sylville K. Smith, the man shot by police in Milwaukee, can be seen in the video appearing to passionately appeal to people’s good sense, saying “Don't bring the violence here!”  

That is when CNN decided to press ‘stop’ and air the video, before Smith had the chance to continue her speech. Appearing on CNN Newsroom on Monday, Smith was described as “calling for peace” by the show’s Ana Cabrera.

But in a fuller version of the video, posted elsewhere, Smith unloads: “Burnin down sh*t ain’t going to help nothin! Y’all burnin’ down sh*t we need in our community. Take that sh*t to the suburbs. Burn that sh*t down! We need our sh*t!  We need our weaves. I don’t wear it. But we need it.”

The network's editing sparked anger on social media.

Milwaukee saw violent riots and street chaos on the weekend, complete with arson and destruction of property. The unrest followed a police-involved shooting of an armed black man. County Sheriff David Clarke quickly took to social media to blame the Obama administration and its liberal policies for the riots. But this only added fuel to people’s anger.

More than 100 people protested on Saturday over the shooting. That didn’t stop Clarke from repeating the sentiment again during a Monday press conference.