"No Detailed Description" Update
Earlier today on both my radio program and this weblog, I pointed out how the local newspaper had reported this morning that there were "no detailed descriptions" of the two men who attacked an 85-year-old man in Wauwatosa Tuesday morning. To the contrary, the police report contains an extremely detailed description of the primary attacker, including an estimate as to his age, height, weight and yes, race!
As longtime listeners of my program are aware, I occasionally question how vigorously the newspaper enforces it's policy of not sanitizing crime stories to eliminate references to race?
For my money, if a dangerous criminal is at large, I think it's in the public interest for those of us in the media to offer as full a description of the suspect as possible. If that means that I get a little added scrutiny if I'm innocently walking by the scene of a crime and the description of the guy police are looking for is "a white male in his 40s or early 50s, approximately 6' tall, with blond hair", so be it.
In any event, a little after 3 p.m. this afternoon, the newspaper issued a "Correction" to the story about the Wauwatosa robbery. This "Correction" indicates that, as I pointed out, a detailed description of at least one of the suspects was contained in the police report and therefore available to the media.
By the way, it sounds like the police now have at least one of the robbers in custody.