Monday, November 27, 2006

Homicide in Lindenhurst

There was a woman killed in Lindenhurst this morning.

The local media began calling before we even had any information. There were 2 helicopters and a plane circling the scene; it does amaze me the photographic clarity that they achieve shooting from that distance above the ground.

When I got into the office I had a dozen messages, reporters looking for information. I didn’t talk to them until later in the day, when I could release the name of the individual killed. We withheld releasing the woman’s name while family was notified, and that information could spread out to all the family not living locally. Some media folks already had her name and only needed confirmation; others had a name that wasn’t correct. Some had considerable detail about her life (one had already talked with her family); others didn’t have any information. I have talked with and/or returned calls to 18 or 20 reporters (at the time I am typing this), TV, radio, and print media.

We continue to withhold the cause of death, because the Major Crimes Task Force asked us to and plans on using that information in their ongoing investigation. The hope is that some “person of interest” will reveal details not released to the media while being questioned, but I don’t think it usually works that way. The media seems to find out bits and pieces from various sources (outside of my office) and will likely have a pretty good idea and story out before we release the information. That is usually how it works out.

Homicide is big news. Little news would be the woman who was trying to get her life back together and died in a tragic accident before she could win her battle (I think that is big news, too).

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