Focus on Crime, Not Reporting
Focus on Crime, Not ReportingDear Editor;
I must take exception to points made in a recent Bag of Mail letter captioned Police Blotter Woes. The writer states or implies that your Police Blotter column:
1. Has to be seen as a violation of Constitutional Rights of Privacy, 2. Fails to print exoneration of charged persons, 3. Could be linked to improper police activities, 4) Significantly sells papers, 5. Adversely affects the stability of our community.
Large and small newspapers all over the country have forever reported on arrests without necessarily giving equal or any space to exonerations. Constitutional questions are never raised. In fact, your heading of the column cautions that "All persons are innocent until proven guilty."
Police are lauded for reducing crime in their precincts. It is doubtful their object in making arrests is publicity in the Police Blotter as arresting officers are not identified.
Reported arrests of people such as O.J. or Robert Blake sell papers but I doubt if many buy The Wave because of the Police Blotter.
The Rockaways have boomed since the Police Blotter has been published. Anyone who thinks it has any impact on our growth or stability has to be naïve.
We should focus on criminals, the crimes they commit and not the reporting thereof. Let's not infringe upon freedom of the press.