Saturday, May 03, 2008

I'm gathering examples of bad reporting, the sort of stuff that crops up when you do news on the cheap. Below is an excellent case of prejudicial pre-trial publicity in which a newspaper, the Midland Free Press, takes a press release from the cops and prints it without editing or vetting it for potential legal and ethical problems.
Note that the paper states categorically that the charged man, whose name I removed, is guilty of armed robbery of a Subway restaurant, a charge that could easily result in a penetentiary term.
Quebecor is the company that owns this newspaper. A good lawyer woudl ask for a jury trial and argue the newspaper has limited the suspect's right to a fair trial by an untainted jury. Quebecor risks a fine for contempt of court. Sometimes "cheap" can be awfully expensive.
This is a great example of a case of "cheap" and "lazy" impacting on the civil rights of some ordinary person who may or may not be a robber. That determination belongs to the courts, not the newspapers.

Arrest Made in Subway Robbery

The Southern Georgian Bay OPP Crime Unit has been following up a number of leads, which have lead to the arrest of the person responsible for an armed robbery at the Subway Sub store located at 188 Main Street in Penetanguishene on the evening of Thursday, Dec. 13 2007.

Charged with one count of armed robbery is 31-year-old XXXXX XXXXXXX XXXX* of Orillia. He appeared in court and was remanded in custody to a later date.

(Name removed to prevent legal hassles)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Jesus - Is that exactly how it ran?? Bad grammar and all? And included his name? Well, at least he should be able to afford a lawyer for his robbery charges from the settlement he can extract here ....