News Seattle Times Sins of Omission
posted by October 15 at 12:06 PMon
Yesterday’s Seattle Times picked up my story from a couple of weeks ago about interim KC Prosecutor Dan Satterberg’s failure to subpoena personnel files from the Seattle Archdiocese. A local attorney who had seen the filesóand was winning settlements from the Church in child sex abuse casesówrote a letter to the KC prosecutor’s office telling them they should see the files and file criminal charges.
Part of my story focused on the notion that Satterberg’s position on a special Archdiocese panel to help the Church deal with sex abuse cases was a conflict of interest. After all, the attorney asked, wasn’t Satterberg the public law enforcement official who was supposed to be busting potential law breakers rather than helping them?
That’s the issue that the Seattle Times focuses on. Their headline reads: “Possible conflict seen in work Satterberg did for archdiocese.”
They do a typical daily newspaper “He said/She said” on the debate, which isn’t so bad in this case because it is a debatable questionóand an interesting one.
However, they give the last word to the “No, it’s not a conflict of interest” POV, quoting a UW Law Prof. They write: But “if his role was solely to give policy advice, where he never saw specific cases then I don’t see any conflict.”
Okay. Except, I asked Satterberg this very questionódid he see any specific cases? (I don’t know if the Seattle Times asked Satterberg this question or not.) Satterberg told me he did see specific cases.