Neighbors say that WTAE-TV “overreacted” in a report last month about a break-in at an empty elementary school.
According to Marty Levine in Pittsburgh City Paper, three members of a Swedish rock band (no, not ABBA) were at a party in Polish Hill on June 15 when they decided to sneak into the abandoned building to check out the view.
Police were called and arrested six people — but the building’s owner dropped the charges and one of the guilty parties agreed to help clean up the grounds and secure the structure.
All’s well that ends well, right? Yes, until WTAE-TV got hold of the police reports.
Citing unidentified sources, WTAE reporter Shannon Perrine said on July 15 that police were investigating “whether six people arrested in June” had ties to anarchist groups.
The building is “a perfect training center” for “people who would like to cause damage to Pittsburgh during the G-20 summit,” Perrine said, and these “six young people” (she emphasized the word “young”) with a “European connection” might have links to terrorists.
Yet those remarks were edited out of the report that aired, according to City Paper.
WTAE’s response? City Paper says that WTAE News Director Alex Bongiorno told Perrine “not to discuss the story.”
Stay tuned for WTAE’s next “ONLY ON 4” exclusive: “TV NEWSCAST HYPE: IS IT GOING TOO FAR?!”