Assignment 2 – Domestic Shooting Case Study

Domestic Shooting
Adapted From RTNDF: Newsroom Ethics (Fourth Edition)

Following a shooting, you are sent to the scene to record video and interviews for your tv station. Station officials requested and received a copy of the emotional 911 call in which Rhonda Ricketts told the dispatcher she shot her husband in self-defense and that he had abused her. Below is an example of the coverage of this story to give you an idea of the audio and video assets that you will have to work with.  Weigh the value to the audience of hearing the call against any harm that could come from airing it.

Note:  You do not need permission from law enforcement, the family or anyone else to air any or all of the call. 9-1-1 calls are public record. Also, airing the tape is NOT an invasion of privacy. Do not make this a legal argument about privacy.

After viewing the video in its entirety, use your decision memo guide to set up the problem, offer a solution, identify the dilemma, weight the alternatives and cite an ethical rationale in justifying your decision.


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