George Graf, 36, who has previously faced charges of assault and ethnic intimidation was arrested Thursday for allegedly assaulting a WHYY producer and his girlfriend in Fishtown on June 1. The incident took place when a group of vigilantes, armed with baseball bats, had gathered in response to protests and civil unrest.
WHYY producer Jon Ehrens was posting video in Fishtown when members of the group began to assault him and his girlfriend.
Graf is the first person to be arrested in the attack. He has pleaded guilty to simple assault twice before.
He has been charged with aggravated assault, as well as simple assault and reckless endangerment. He was also charged with felony criminal conspiracy to engage in aggravated assault, and a misdemeanor conspiracy to assault charge, an indication that other arrests may follow.
According to a law enforcement source, the investigation of Graf was initiated by the District Attorney’s Office, with subsequent collaboration by the Philadelphia police.
The charges occur as residents are demanding stronger police action against these violent vigilantes.