I find Saturday’s Star Tribune story by Paul McEnroe and Rochelle Olson on the expunged 1995 arrest of Republican Fifth District congressional candidate Alan Fine to be reprehensible. We posted the rationale offered by Star Tribune “reader’s representative” Kate Parry for the Star Tribune’s publication of the story here. Parry conteded that the story had “news value” because “Fine was arrested by the police, charged with domestic assault and spent a few hours in jail” and that “the allegations raised in the court documents were corroborated by the ex-wife in interviews with Star Tribune reporters.” Parry did not mention or comment on the expungement of the arrest.
At the Star Tribune’s online site, editor Anders Gyllenhaal has also offered his rationale for the publication of the story. Anyone who suspects that the Star Tribune offices are something of an echo chamber won’t be disabused of the notion by Gyllenhaal’s comments:
Several elements contributed to the decision to run the story: The officers who answered the domestic call decided to pursue the arrest and sent Fine to jail; the candidate