SANTA MONICA—While a live CNN news broadcast was transpiring on the beaches of Santa Monica on Tuesday, June 7, a transient woman defecated behind the correspondent conducting her report.
Sarah Sidner, a national correspondent for CNN, was discussing the coronavirus pandemic with Kate Bouldain at their CNN headquarters in New York.
While Sidner was in the middle of her report, an assumed homeless woman off screen walked into the frame of the newscast and laid a trash bag beside her. Facing the camera from the other side of the beach path, the woman is seen pulling down her pants to set herself in a position to excrete her bowels off to the side of the shot.
Neither Sidner nor Bouldain acknowledged the woman’s actions on camera and maintained composure throughout the broadcast. Sidner swayed her body in the direction of the restroom-goer to block her actions from viewers while continuing with her report. Sidner was detailing on camera how by the end of July, there may not enough ICU beds if current trends in coronavirus cases in California do not flatten.
On Tuesday, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed there were over 4,000 coronavirus cases. Currently, there are 1,969 individuals hospitalized with the virus.
Defecation and human waste can expose others to bacteria and other diseases that pose an immediate threat to the public. If stepped on, feces can be traced into people’s homes making them prone to contamination.
Los Angeles County Code Section 11.16.050 cites that those convicted with public urination/defecation can be charged with a misdemeanor offense punishable with a $1,000 fine or jail.