Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Stinkin' Journal Star

As Gerard Harbison recently blogged, the Lincoln Journal Star has been increasingly derelict in their duty to report the facts. The most recent episode involves a rape and robbery that took place at Hot Rayz Tanning Salon at 4344 North 62nd Street (Havelock area in Lincoln).

Here's how 10/11 news summarized the event:

Police: Salon Worker Raped and Robbed

Description of suspect:
Authorities say the victim described the man as a black male in his early 20's, between 5'8'' and 5'10'' with a slim build. He was wearing a black ski mask, sweatshirt, sweatpants and white latex gloves.

Now, here's how the LJS reported the very same crime:

Police Investigate Robbery, Sexual Assault

Description of suspect:
The robber, who was wearing a black ski mask, black sweater, black sweat pants and white latex gloves, fled on foot with an undisclosed amount of money.

Interesting, to say the least. I'm fairly certain that, if the woman says she was raped, she was raped...there's no need to sugarcoat it with terms like "sexual assault". On top of this, conspicuously missing from the LJS story is a description of the suspect's age, height, weight, and race.

I recently contacted the LJS regarding this ongoing lack of consistency in reporting, as this has occurred many times over the recent months...10/11 gives all details related to the police report, while the LJS omits many of those details. An official from the LJS responded that, while it is sometimes due to sloppy reporting (SHOCK!!!), there is an official policy that they are not to release details on the suspect if those details are deemed to be to generic. Here, a description giving race, age, weight, height, AND clothing is available...and we only get a description of the clothing from LJS. What more do they need for the description to be deemed specific enough to identify the suspect?

Is it not possible for the purp to remove the latex gloves and ski mask? I guess it's a bad day to be in Lincoln while wearing a black sweater and sweatpants.

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