The LA Times reports that featured Fox News contributor John Loftus incorrectly identified a La Habra, CA, home as that of a terrorist. The family of five who lives there has been harrassed ever since. According to FOXNews.com, John Kasich hosted the segment on Heartland July 30: "And, all four suspects in the botched July 21 London bombings are in custody. But are more people responsible for the failed attacks and, if so, will the detained suspects give up their buddies? John Loftus, former Department of Justice prosecutor, and Steve Purl, former Scotland Yard special ops, weigh in." [...] Loftus, whose "Inside Scoop with John Loftus" is a feature of Fox Network News television every Sunday at 11:20 AM, gave the family's address on the air, saying that a terrorist connected with the July 7 London bombings lived at the address. Directions and satellite photos were briefly available on-line until police intervened and had them taken down. Loftus claims he gave the information out on national cable to help the local police locate a terrorist. He said that "mistakes happen" and it was "the best information we had at the time." The family understandably wants Fox to make a public correction and apology, but have not received one. Fox has sent a one-line statement to the LA Times. Loftus has sent the family an e-mail apologizing. If you find this kind of shoddy journalism appalling and dangerous let them know at firstname.lastname@example.org.Shoddy? Fox News and John Loftus have probably endangered the lives of the family they slandered! This is one of the few cases where a lawsuit is definitely needed, but Fox will simply bully their way out of it were one brought.
Update (4.10pm, Monday 29 August 2005): Thankfully, John Loftus has just been fired by Fox.
[Tags: media | journalism | foxnews | terrorism]