By: Mary Urso
On December 8th 2021, a man lit the Fox News Christmas Tree on fire in New York City. Every year, Fox News displays an All-American Christmas tree outside of their headquarters in Manhattan. The 50-foot tree had been lit only days before this incident.
Reports say the fire started just after midnight on December 8th. The majority of the tree was destroyed before firefighters arrived on the scene. This is the first defamation of the tree in the history of Fox News’ “All-American” Christmas tree tradition.
Wednesday December 9th, a man was arrested for this crime by the New York Police Department. Craig Tamanaha, 49, was seen climbing the structure by Fox News security shortly before the fire broke out around 12:15am. Once located, he was arrested and charged with 7 criminal counts.
To the surprise of Fox News, the suspect was released without bail. The judge ruled each charge a misdemeanor, meaning no bail was be set for Mr. Tamanaha. His next court appearance is scheduled for January 4th, 2022.
In response, Fox News Media and its chief executive Suzanne Scott put out a memo condemning the vandalism and said that the tree would be replaced by Thursday, December 9th. This will be done during the broadcast’s “The Five” with Lawrence Jones and Abby Hornacek.
Scott ended her memo saying, “We will not let this deliberate and brazen act of cowardice deter us. We are in the process of rebuilding and installing a new tree as a message that there can be peace, light and joy even during a dark moment like this.”