UNDERNEWS

Undernews is the online report of the Progressive Review, edited by Sam Smith, who has covered Washington during all or part of one quarter of America's presidencies and edited alternative journals since 1964. The Review has been on the web since 1995. See main page for full contents

April 11, 2009

VETERANS ADMINISTRATION RETURNING REPORTER'S EQUIPMENT IT STOLE FROM HIM

Washington Post - Officials at WAMU radio and the Department of Veterans Affairs settled a dispute last night over the confiscation of a reporter's recording equipment during a public forum this week at the VA hospital in the District.

Jim Asendio, news director at the station, said the sound card from the reporter's digital recorder was due to be turned over to him late last night, with no conditions. VA officials initially said they would return the card only if the reporter, David Schultz, signed a consent form that should have been signed before he conducted any interviews.

The station contended that confiscating the device violated Schultz's First Amendment right to gather news. The department claimed that Schultz did not identify himself or follow proper procedures for interviewing VA patients while at the event.

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