A Fox TV affiliate in San Diego suffered a major broadcast blunder when it showed a picture of President Obama instead of an image of a suspected rapist.
KSWB-TV, also known as Fox 5 San Diego, displayed a picture of Obama speaking at a microphone rather than art of a suspect in a rape case in a report during its newscast on Friday night. The image, which included a caption that read “no charges,” appeared on a screen behind anchor Kathleen Bade for about five seconds. Bade’s report discussed how the office of San Diego County District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis’ has declined to prosecute a person of interest in a rape case, the Raw Story blog reported. The sexual assault case involved students at San Diego State University.
The hour-long telecast did not follow up the mistake with a correction. Butstation officials noticed the slip-up right away, Fox 5 San Diego assignment editor Mike Wille told the Times of San Diego.
“Yeah, there was an accident when they had an over-the-shoulder [view during the broadcast]” Wille said. “It wasn’t on purpose.”
He said of the decision not to run a correction: “They really don’t do that when it’s a small thing like that.”
The station is a subsidiary of Chicago-based Tribune Broadcasting and is identified on the media conglomerate’s website as operating in the 28th-largest media market in the country. But its mistake could fuel negative comments online as the mixup goes viral.
Liberal blog Daily Kos ran an item Sunday morning denouncing the mistake and the station’s “slanted” coverage of both Obama and Hillary Clinton in previous stories. It also included contact information for the local TV station.