Monday, March 26, 2012

The Sound Bite

"The cop shot the kid."
This was the sound bite I heard last night as I was gathering up my things, about to turn off the television and head upstairs.
Really? Was this the best that NBC News could do? Sure, it roped me in---as it was meant to---but can we pause a moment and think about the sheer amount of bias that comes from airing that several second sound bite from a hysterical onlooker?

It ends up that police shot and wounded a 23-year-old ex-con who opened fire on a Harlem street Sunday evening. Then they recovered his gun which was reported stolen in North Carolina.
The only problem was that none of the people who were hanging out on the street saw the perp with a gun; they only reported seeing the cop shoot the kid.

Although several witnesses said they did not see Nunez holding a gun as he was shot while leaping over a car, a police source said he had the firearm in his hand when he hit the sidewalk.

“The cop saw he was getting away and shot him,” said Jasmine Little, 19, of Harlem.

Read more:

No mention of a gun. It ends up that Mr. Nunez just got off parole in September after having served a two-year prison term for FIVE illegal handguns.

Even more shocking is that fact that---sound bite alone---the casual TV News Observer was paused to take in a sad story of a restless cop who just felt like shooting an innocent child on a tricycle rolling through the ghetto simply because...well, he felt like it. I mean, the kid was wearing a hoodie from The Children's Place...and he had one pant leg rolled up...
Sarcasm, anyone?

The adversarial role that the New York City Media has taken on regarding the NYPD is unhelpful at best, and detrimental at worst. I know for a fact that some cops are afraid to do their jobs because they are worried about the aftermath. And in a split second or less, that flash of concern is enough to get a police officer hurt or worse.

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