Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Media targets police lack of training, equipment to provide first aid in Cleveland

I'm all for accountability, particularly when it comes to government services--including police services. But this piece of journalism by WKYC's Tom Meyer, while attempting to address the city's lack of medical training and first aid supplies for Cleveland police officers, slants the story against the officers themselves nonetheless.  Calling them "untrained" and "unable to serve", the Ch. 3 anchors and reporter make their agenda clear.

Meyer goes out of his way to paint the officers on the scene at the Tamir Rice shooting as indifferent toward his condition, and does the same thing with Tanisha Anderson. The situation in Rice's case could not be more misleading, as the facts reported by officers on-scene attest.

Moreover, even though Meyer confronted Safety Director Mike McGrath about the lack of ongoing first aid training and medical kits in cruisers, he never goes to the top of the food chain, Mayor Jackson. He also makes a point of comparing police first aid responses to civilians to that of fellow officers in hypothetical situations.

The intent of this story is clear: the public is not going to get what it wants in the investigation of Rice's shooting, because it was an absolutely defensible police-involved shooting--proven by video. Since the officers will not stand trial in the case, the media is trying to zero in on what they want to paint as the officers' "callousness" in the immediate aftermath of the shooting.

CPPA President Steve Loomis was featured in the story, and he will more in-depth on the story with me at 9:20 Tuesday morning. Don't miss it.

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