Trayvon Martin Tape Editing Prompts Internal Probe at NBC

Sunday, 01 Apr 2012 07:55 PM

 

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NBC News reportedly has begun an internal investigation after it appears to have aired a misleadingly edited 911 call tape involving George Zimmerman, the Florida man who fatally shot 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.

The internal investigation was reported by The Washington Post.

The edited call, which aired on NBC's "Today Show" on March 27, featured Zimmerman talking to a 911 dispatcher.

"This guy looks like he's up to no good ... he looks black," Zimmerman said in the edited segment.

That, it turns out, appears to be only part of the exchange that took place on the night of February 26. The complete exchange went like this:

Zimmerman: "This guy looks like he's up to no good. Or he's on drugs or something. It's raining and he's just walking around, looking about."

Dispatcher: "OK, and this guy -- is he black, white or Hispanic?"

Zimmerman: "He looks black."

Brent Bozell, president of the conservative Media Research Center, called this mistake worse than a distortion or a misrepresentation and "an all-out falsehood." He made the comment on the March 29 edition of the Fox News show "Hannity."

"When you hear him say, 'he looks black,' anyone watching that believes that there are racial overtones to what this man did," Bozell says. "How could you not believe that? It goes with the narrative of the profiling. The only problem is, they edited out the dispatcher asking him, 'What does he look like?'"

Much of the public discussion over the past week has settled on how conflicting facts and interpretations call into question whether Zimmerman acted justifiably or criminally. The interplay between Zimmerman and the dispatcher has been a critical part of the discussion.

© 2014 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

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