A year of protest, social unrest and political upheaval has transformed local crime reporting.
To wit . . .
MOST KANSAS CITY NEWS STATIONS DECLINED TO SHARE SUSPECT DEETS AFTER THE TRAGIC SHOOTING OF A YOUNG GIRL THIS WEEKEND!!!
Here's their reasoning . . .
"The use of mugshots often has a disproportionate impact on the impoverished, specifically those who can’t afford legal representation, and communities of color, often serving to perpetuate racial stereotypes."
There was a bit of confusion in the initial reporting but police helped verify deets for reporters.
Strangely, the info didn't have the "reach" that a story like this would typically garner.
To be fair, one local news station isn't highlighting suspect deets but does offer dramatic footage of the gun fight . . .
Nevertheless . . . We sent a few messages out and here's what we've heard back from newsie insiders regarding the important omission . . . Check the word from a trusted newsie currently working on this story . . .
"There is a real risk of turning away a lot of viewers with mugshots. A few complaints can cost somebody without a lot of seniority their job. For most of the new people it's not worth it. Mugshots are now in disfavor and that saves reporters a great deal of hassle. Stories shouldn't depend on them. Most of the time they're just filler but when it's important, you'll see them."
And so, as may TKC readers previously pointed out, the recent shooting of a youngster didn't merit mugshot attention or suspect description for most stations except one.
Take a look . . .
Deets . . .
Police originally reported the child was 5. They have since learned she is 9 years old. "Police released photos of all four subjects. All four individuals are considered armed and dangerous. The group was last seen driving in a black Dodge Durango with Missouri license plate . . .
Again, most viewers aren't going to go searching for crime suspects so description isn't always an essential detail . . . Still, the selection of visuals remains an important aspect of local crime reporting that continues to "evolve" and encounter debate amid a turbulent 2020.
Developing . . .