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EDITORIAL: Media, social media, the justice system and 'allegedly' – TheChronicleHerald.ca

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Here’s an explanation that might not satisfy everyone.

But give it a try.

WSAV reporter Alex Bozarjian was doing a live report on a road race in Savannah, Georgia on Dec. 7, when a passing runner, later identified as Thomas Callaway, a Boy Scout leader and church youth volunteer, appeared to reach out and smack her on the butt.

To be clear, the behaviour is in no way acceptable: just because you’re doing your job in a public place doesn’t mean there’s an open season on unwanted physical contact or even shouted obscenities.

As Bozarjian’s employers were quick to point out: “The conduct displayed toward Alex Bozarjian during her live coverage of Saturday’s Savannah Bridge Run was reprehensible and completely unacceptable … No one should ever be disrespected in this manner. The safety and protection of our employees is WSAV-TV’s highest priority.”

The sooner people in the public — particularly star-struck oafish males who have a lot of growing up to do — recognize that and modify their behaviour, the better for us all.

There are a host of different headlines about the case: “Runner who allegedly smacked TV reporter’s backside charged with sexual battery”, “Runner who allegedly sexually assaulted reporter has been arrested”, “Man accused of slapping reporter’s backside on air charged with sexual battery”.

And that’s where things get interesting.

Social media, where video of the situation took off internationally, has since had some interesting questions not only about Callaway’s behaviour, but about the way the news media reported the event.

Here’s a sample that explains the new issue succinctly: “Just wish they’d stop putting ‘accused’ and ‘alleged’ before his name WE HAVE IT ON VIDEO.”

So, why “alleged”? Why “accused”?

The reason is both simple and complicated; criminal charges are involved.

And that changes everything,

The western justice system is based on the presumption of innocence.

Accurately reporting on cases in that justice system involves recognizing that people accused of crimes are innocent until those crimes are proven beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

It sounds like splitting hairs, but it’s both arcane and necessary.

The facts are, in many ways, not in a great amount of dispute: the television reporter says she was slapped on the backside, the video shows that happening, and the man involved admits his did something he shouldn’t have done (although he maintains he touched her lower back).

But, right now, the media can’t actually report that Callaway committed a sexual assault, because it wouldn’t be accurate.

You can argue that there’s a pretty good chance that, given the available evidence so far, there’s a pretty good likelihood Callaway will plead guilty or be convicted.

But his conviction is not our job.

Sure, it’s frustrating.

But the media is not a substitute for the justice system, nor should it be.

And neither, by the way, is social media.

Want to join the conversation? Comments are open on this editorial at SaltWire.com. 

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Halifax police, school investigate attack on student in social media video – Global News

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A video showing several teenagers attacking another student at the Halifax Common surfaced on social media on Friday. Halifax police and the regional education centre say they are investigating the “very disturbing” incident.

The incident, involving students from Citadel High School, occurred Thursday afternoon after class.

The video circulating on social media shows three teenagers walking behind a student. After the student lays on the ground, a second student is seen stomping on his head. Another individual filming could be heard egging the fight.

“The school has spoken with everyone involved and the aggressors and their families know there are consequences for those actions, even though it happened off school property,” says Doug Hadley, spokesperson for the Halifax Regional Centre for Education.

Read more:
Two people dead after early morning fire in Hilden: N.S. RCMP

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The school has also contacted police, who have confirmed they are investigating the incident.

“Halifax Regional Police would like to confirm that we have received reports of an incident captured in a video involving a physical altercation between some youths,” HRP said in a news release Friday night.

“We can confirm that we have an ongoing investigation into this matter. Due to the age of the parties involved, we are unable to provide specific details.

“We would like to assure the public that we take the matter seriously and are taking all necessary steps in this ongoing matter.”

Early Saturday afternoon, Citadel High School principal Joe Morrison released a statement saying the incident is being taken seriously.

“We were made aware of the incident on Friday and spent considerable time addressing the situation.

“Late Friday afternoon, we became aware that a video of the incident was circulating on social media,” Morrison wrote.

“We also learned there is a narrative circulating suggesting the person on the ground has special needs. This is not the case and distracts from what actually happened.”


Click to play video 'Surveillance video shows RCMP officers after shooting at Nova Scotia fire hall'



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Surveillance video shows RCMP officers after shooting at Nova Scotia fire hall


Surveillance video shows RCMP officers after shooting at Nova Scotia fire hall

As for the student attacked, authorities say he is doing fine and attended school on Friday, but that doesn’t change the seriousness of the incident.

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“It’s very disturbing for anyone who’s seen it, so it’s a matter of great concern for everyone who is involved,” Hadley says.

He is also pleading for everyone to stop sharing the video of the attack.

“It’s sharing a video of someone being attacked, and they’re being filmed without their consent, and so every time we share that it can lead to further victimization,” Hadley says.

“It can be harmful on many different levels,” he says, adding that there is also an issue of reputation. “This might be reflective of the larger community when in fact we know that not to be true, and that Citadel High and its students have many things to be proud of.

“But there’s also a feeling that there’s a risk, that others might think that’s acceptable behavior when it’s clearly not.”

Police say the investigation into the incident is ongoing and the school has stated that there will be consequences for the students involved.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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March 6th Media Release – Brandon Police Service

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March 6th, 2021

Brandon Police Service Media Release for the Past 24 Hours.

Theft Under $5000

A male youth was arrested on Friday afternoon for Theft Under $5000. A report was received from a business in the 900 block of Victoria Ave of a male stealing $300 in electronics from the business.   The suspect was identified and located on Friday afternoon. He was arrested for the theft and released to appear in court in May.

Fail to Comply with Release Order

A male youth from Brandon was arrested on Friday for breaching two conditions of a release order. On March 4th, he attended to his ex-girlfriends residence contrary to a condition of the order. He was also not located at his residence and was in breach of a second condition. He was located on Friday, arrested and held for remand. 

Break and Enter Warrant executed

A 33 year old Brandon man was arrested on a warrant for Break Enter and Commit Mischief. The man was located in the 1900 block of Brandon Ave and arrested on the warrant. He was released to appear in court in May.

Assault

A male youth from Brandon was arrested on Friday afternoon on charges of Assault and Defamatory Libel. The accused assaulted a female by striking her with a stick while they were skating. The accused had also spread rumours that the victim was sharing nude photos with him. He will appear in court in May.

Breach of Release Order/Obstruct Police Officer

On Friday evening officers responded to a report of an intoxicated man causing disturbance in the 900 block of Victoria Ave. The man was located nearby and he was found to be on a court order with a curfew of 9 pm. The man was arrested and lodged. A second man who was the first man’s father interfered with the investigation and was arrested and charged with Obstructing a police officer. The two man, an 18 year old and 42 year old, both residents of York Landing Mb were lodged and later released to appear in court in April.

Other arrests

A 48 year old Brandon man was arrested on a warrant for Assault, Possession of Property Obtained by Crime and Failing to Attend Court. He was released to appear in court in May.

A 29 year old Brandon was arrested on an arrest for warrant for Breach of Probation. He was released to appear in court in May.

A 35 year old woman from Waywayseecappo turned herself in at the police service on Friday as she was aware of a warrant for her arrest. She was arrested and released to appear in court in May.

V.W. (Bill) Brown #114, Staff Sergeant

NCO i/c D Platoon

204 729 2319

 

Anyone with information on any unsolved crime is asked to call Brandon Crime Stoppers at 204-727-(TIPS) 8477, or by texting BCSTIP and your message to CRIMES (274637).  Crime Stoppers pays up to $2000.00 cash for information that leads to the solution of a crime.

CRIME STOPPERS 204-727-TIPS

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Social Media Buzz: Crypto Mogul Bids $2 Million for Dorsey Tweet – BNN

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(Bloomberg) — What’s buzzing on social media this morning:

Jack Dorsey, Twitter’s co-founder and chief executive, is selling his first-ever tweet — “just setting up my twttr”– on a website called Valuables that auctions tweets. The highest bid is $2 million as of Saturday morning in New York, by Justin Sun, the Chinese crypto entrepreneur who earlier won an auction for Warren Buffett’s charity dinner.

  • Valuables said on its website that owning any digital content can be a “financial investment, hold sentimental value, and create a relationship between collector and creator,” just like an autographed baseball card.
  • The website, launched three months ago, allows people to purchase a digital certificate of a tweet, which can be issued only once and signed by the creator using cryptography. The tweet itself will continue to stay on Twitter.

Microsoft is trending on Twitter after a report shows a China-linked hack affected at least 30,000 organizations across the U.S., including small businesses and local governments. The hackers exploited previously unknown flaws of the software. Jen Psaki, the White House press secretary, said the incident is an “active threat” and could have “far-reaching impacts.”

The Senate is on track to pass President Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion stimulus bill as early as midday Saturday after a compromise reduced added unemployment benefits to $300 a week, one of several ways moderate Democrats shaped the bill to be less generous than the House version.

  • Biden has moved rapidly to shape his the image of his presidency, drawing obvious contrasts with Donald Trump. The president starts his days with an early morning workout in the gym of the White House residence, watching MSNBC or CNN, and doesn’t read Twitter unless someone shows him a tweet, Bloomberg News reported.

A trending op-ed on The Washington Post said, “If you’re upset about Hunter Biden, Elaine Chao should send you into fits of rage.” The author argued Republicans have been much more muted when it comes to the matter of the former transportation secretary and wife of Mitch McConnell.

  • Chao attempted to include members of her family, who run a shipping line, on an official government trip in apparent violation of ethics rules, a report by The Transportation Department’s Inspector General found earlier.

Reddit said it’s investigating elevated error rates Saturday morning after some users reported they have problems opening the website.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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