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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    West Coast

    Globe Lead Investigator speaks out

    A brake on the paparazzi

    By Jeffrey Scott Shapiro

    October 15, 2005

    UNDER A NEW California law, victims of assaults by paparazzi can ask for punitive damages and a court order stripping the photographer of any proceeds from pictures taken during the assault.

    For ordinary people, it's no doubt difficult to imagine that anyone would risk the life of another human being to get a picture or story, but I'm sorry to tell you, such rituals are common for tabloid journalists.

    I know because I used to be one. When I was 23 years old, I was enlisted as the lead investigator on the JonBenet Ramsey case for the Globe tabloid. My job was to dig up dirt to help my editors write about the alleged involvement of John Ramsey in the sexual molestation and murder of his daughter.

    Week after week, I sent my editors reports based on my conversations with law enforcement sources in Boulder, Colo., that indicated John Ramsey was not the lead suspect. Nonetheless, the Globe continued to push for stories in that direction. I quickly realized that by paying so-called sources and experts to accept attribution for fabricated quotes and headlines, the tabloid empire had the power to accuse anyone of anything, anytime.

    When sources ran dry, I remember people talked about "creating" a story by reporting false information (anonymously, of course) to the police. This way, they could misdirect the investigation in directions that suited their editorial needs.

    When they wanted to publish a story reporting that the police were investigating a particular lead, for instance, they phoned it in. And when the police showed up to investigate these leads, paparazzi often would be waiting in their cars to photograph them, shielded behind dark, tinted glass.

    In some instances, I remember discussions about different strategies on how to bribe members of law enforcement.

    The rest is here:


    JEFFREY SCOTT SHAPIRO is a freelance investigative reporter and a former reporter for the Globe tabloid. He can be reached at jshapiro@ufl.edu.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    NSW Australia
    I've always liked Shapiro.
    I think he tried really hard to get to the truth.
    Thanks kaly for posting that article.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Detroit 'Burb

    Any Questions for Shapiro?

    This is a very interesting post.

    Shapiro was always so energetic, I bet he'd still try to investigate things people might ask him. It was good you gave his email address.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    dallas, tx
    well i have always taken the Globe with "a grain of salt" so to speak. i seldom fully believe any story plastered on their cover.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Jeff Shapiro was one of the few "heros" in this case. I heard tape recordings of him speaking to the Editor of Globe (long time ago, but I believe my memory serves me right). He disputed the tactics being used by the tab.

    I also remember someone (Globe? I believe) called in a fake lead about the pilot (Archuletta) being given a box of something by John Ramsey to hold....the fake lead led the police to Archuletta's home for a search AND guess who was there - photographers waiting to take the pictures.

    I appreciate the Steve Thomas episode with Shapiro - and, at this time, would give Shapiro credibility on any story he is covering....as I believe he would be sincere, check facts and report as honestly as possible.
    IMO -

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