Man sought for MSNBC reporter attack in Miss. nearly caused ‘environmental disaster’ in Ohio

Benjamin Dagley of Wooster, Ohio, is wanted in connection with assaulting a reporter covering...
Benjamin Dagley of Wooster, Ohio, is wanted in connection with assaulting a reporter covering Hurricane Ida.(Gulfpoint Police Department)
Published: Sep. 1, 2021 at 7:09 AM EDT
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GULFPORT, Miss. (WLBT) - An Ohio man who is accused of attacking a TV reporter in Gulfport, Mississippi on Monday morning has a criminal past, WLBT reported.

In August of 2017, Benjamin Dagley of Wooster, Ohio, drilled holes into tanks of dangerous chemicals, including hydrochloric acid, sending one person to the hospital, according to a report from,

The crime took place at Cleveland Plating, a business Dagley once owned.

According to police, Dagley’s drilling holes into the tanks of sodium cyanide, hydrochloric acid, yellow chromate, ferrous chloride and sulfuric acid risked a potential environmental disaster.

Employers told police that Dagley “knew what he was doing” when he released the chemicals into the air.

A 27-year-old security guard who discovered the leaks was taken to the hospital for potential cyanide poisoning.

Two months after the incident, Dagley was charged with misdemeanor assault after he once again broke into Cleveland Plating with two accomplices.

Once inside, he allegedly yelled at a security guard, slammed a door into their knee and then punched them in the mouth.

Dagley pleaded guilty in 2018 in the case and sentenced to five years of probation and 30 days in jail; instructed to undergo anger management; and ordered to pay a fine and restitution

He is now on the run, accused of attacking an MSNBC reporter covering Hurricane Ida live on the air.

Dagley is charged with two counts of simple assault, one count of disturbing the peace and one count of violation of emergency curfew.

One of the conditions of his Ohio probation was restriction of travel, so Ohio authorities have been alerted, WOIO reported.

Authorities say Dagley is no longer on the Mississippi Gulf Coast and is believed to be traveling in a white 2016 Ford F150.

The reporter Dagley attacked, Shaquille Brewster, tweeted moments after the incident that he and his team were “all good.”

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