Expert says White House's video of journalist scuffle was likely doctored

An independent video producer tells The Associated Press a video tweeted by the White House on an interaction between CNN reporter Jim Acosta and a White House intern appears to have been manipulated to make the reporter's actions look more aggressive.

The White House suspended the press pass of Acosta after he and President Donald Trump had a heated confrontation during a news conference.

A White House aide tried to grab the microphone off the journalist, who Trump also called an enemy of the people. Source: NBC

They began sparring Wednesday (yesterday NZT) after Acosta asked Trump about the caravan of migrants heading from Latin America to the southern US border.

When Acosta tried to follow up with another question, Trump said, "That's enough!" and a female White House aide unsuccessfully tried to grab the microphone from Acosta.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders released a statement accusing Acosta of "placing his hands on a young woman just trying to do her job as a White House intern," calling it "absolutely unacceptable."

The interaction between Acosta and the intern was brief, and Acosta appeared to brush her arm as she reached for the microphone and he tried to hold onto it.

Acosta tweeted that Sanders' statement was "a lie."

Video producer Abba Shapiro did a side-by-side and frame-by-frame analysis of AP's video from President Donald Trump's contentious news conference Wednesday (yesterday NZT) and the version spread on Twitter by Trump press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders.

Shapiro says that when Acosta's hand touches the intern's arm as she reaches for his microphone, the action speeds up in the apparently altered video to accentuate his movement. Earlier in the video, Shapiro notices three frames that were frozen to slow down the action.

This, Shapiro says, enables the manipulated video to run the same length as the original.

Other video experts have also looked into the video and say the timing may have been tampered with.

Sanders has not confirmed the source of the video she tweeted.