Afrique Asie Europe Moyen-Orient Internet Nations unies
 
United States19 May 2006

TV reporter’s details back on police association website

Reporters Without Borders voiced outrage today on learning that the details of WFOS TV-CBS 4 reporter Mike Kirsch have been put back on the “Be On the Look-Out” section of the Broward County Police Benevolent Association’s website (www.bcpba.org) in South Florida. Kirsch has complained about this to the authorities in vain. Reporters Without Borders once again calls for the withdrawal of this wanted notice.


13.4.06 - TV reporter’s details removed from police association website

The details of WFOR TV-CBS 4 reporter Mike Kirsch have been taken down from the “Be On the Look-Out” section of the Broward County Police Benevolent Association’s website (www.bcpba.org) in South Florida. The association had posted his name there in revenge for a controversial report about the South Florida police in which a hidden camera was used.

Kirsch told Reporters Without Borders he was pleased with the development but pointed out that a “wanted notice” for him in the form a leaflet continues to circulate in the Miami region police stations where he carried out his investigation.


07.04.06 - TV reporter’s name posted in police website’s wanted section in retaliation for hidden camera report

Reporters Without Borders today condemned a Florida police association for posting the name of WFOR TV-CBS 4 reporter Mike Kirsch in the “Be On the Look-Out” (BOLO) section of its website, which is normally reserved for fugitives from justice and missing persons. This was done after Kirsch used a hidden camera to produce a report about the difficulty of filing a complaint against a police officer in South Florida police stations.

“As much as the police have a right to question Kirsch’s use of a concealed camera, it is unacceptable for them to retaliate by circulating his details as he were a dangerous individual,” Reporters Without Borders said. “Aside from the fact that it smacks of childish revenge and tale-telling, it is a violation of civil rights. We therefore call for Kirsch’s name to be taken down from the www.bcpba.org site.”

Kirsch produced his report at the beginning of the year with the help of the Police Complaint Centre, a police watchdog group. Equipped with a concealed camera, volunteers tried to file complaints in 38 police stations in Miami-Dade and Broward, two neighbouring counties in South Florida. Most of the time they met with hostility. According to CBS 4, only three police stations cooperated.

Kirsch himself showed the footage they had shot to two senior Miami police officials before the report was screened at the start of February.

The Broward County Police Benevolent Association quickly reacted by posting Kirsch’s details in the BOLO section of its website. It was temporarily withdrawn when CBS 4’s lawyers protested. But Kirsch’s name and photo were put back on 17 March along with the address and mobile phone number of Gregory Slate, one of the Police Complaint Centre’s volunteers. An accompanying warning says the two men could try to entrap police officers and could be driving a red and black Ford Mustang car, of which the licence number is given.

Despite repeated complaints by CBS 4’s lawyers and the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, and enquiries by Reporters Without Borders yesterday, Kirsch’s name is still on the www.bcpba.org site.



In this country
14 May - United States
Arraignment of suspected mastermind of Chauncey Bailey’s murder postponed again
14 May - United States
Obama opposes release of torture photos
6 May - United States
“To combat Internet censorship, companies cannot be left to act on their own”
4 May - United States
Yusuf Bey IV indicted in Chauncey Bailey’s murder
2 May - United States
Reporters Without Borders welcomes President’s statement in honor of World Press Freedom Day

in the annual report
United States - Annual Report 2008
United States - Annual report 2007
United States - Annual report 2006


reports
14 March 2008 - Cuba
No surrender by independent journalists, five years on from “black spring”
5 June 2007 - Venezuela
Closure of Radio Caracas Televisión consolidates media hegemony
22 May 2007 - Colombia
Paramilitary "black eagles" poised to swoop down on press
archives

Americas press releases
3 June - United States
President Obama urged to raise freedom of expression in his Cairo speech
29 May - Venezuela
Open letter to President Hugo Chavez to protest about official hounding of Globovisión
27 May - Mexico
Crime reporter abducted and killed in Durango state
20 May - Cuba
Anyone can browse the Internet... unless they are Cuban
15 May - Cuba
Journalist gets three-year jail sentence

Americas archives
2009 archives
2008 archives
2007 archives
2006 archives
2005 archives
2004 archives
2003 archives
2002 archives
2001 archives
2000 archives

Sign the petitions
Cuba
Miguel Galván Gutiérrez
Cuba
Fabio Prieto Llorente
United States
Chauncey Bailey
A petition to Raúl Castro