Mark PUente – The rebuttal- document Montelon/ City of Lorain
As noted in previous posts I am not making any judgements as to who is in the right or wrong in this litigation. My concern is “how far does a journalist seemingly go to get information for a story which could benefit his chosen “career”
Rivera said in an interview Tuesday that he received about 1,000 of the letters, which he considered bizarre, ominous and threatening, and deserving of a criminal investigation. But he didn’t begin to suspect Montelon until Resendez told him about the meeting with Puente, he said.
“Nobody ever came up with that name,” Rivera said. “We never thought about Joe Montelon until Puente provided the initial direction.”
Note Emphasis mine and from the same Plain Dealer article
Bill Reader, a professor at the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism at Ohio University, said the majority of readers are not bothered by a reporter who cooperates with police on an investigation. If what Resendez said in the deposition is true, Reader said he understands how Puente might have been lured into crossing an ethical line by a trained interrogator.
“Reporters need to remain independent of the government, but when you work the police beat you have to be chummy with them,” Reader said. “You’re going to talk about stuff off the record. From a journalism ethics standpoint it’s questionable, but not cut-and-dried.”
ERRR Mr. Reader it is this bloggers opinion that NOTHING IS EVER OFF THE RECORD WHEN IT COMES TO THE 4TH ESTATE OR INDEED LAW ENFORCEMENT- IT IS NAIVE TO THINK THAT TO BE THE CASE!
January 31st finds the ongoing litigation – ongoing – as stated in the Morning Journal and once again in the thick of it is Mark Puente , whom at the time, was employed by the Plain Dealer
“Former Lorain police officer Joseph Montelon’s attorney filed a motion to a federal court suggesting Lorain police officers searching Montelon’s house nearly four years ago “represents a disturbing abuse of police power” and the case needs to be submitted to a jury
Looking through PDF file sent to me – it looks to the lay person that the search warrant was based upon Mark Puente’s information to the Deputy Sheriff- Resendez .
PDF File of the motion :
“In the motion, Gilbert contends there was no probable cause for the search warrant, which the defendants claim was legally sound.”
in May or June of 2008, Captain Richard Resendez, of the Lorain
county Sheriff’s Office learned from Plain Dealer reporter Mark Puente, who was
evidently conducting his own investigation into the letters and underlying accusations,
that the letter writer was Joseph Montelon. (Doc. 55, pp. 30-31)
Armed with the potential identity of the letter writer, the Lorain detectives went to
Mr. Montelon’s home, some 50 miles away, and seized his trash. The officers were
able to obtain Montelon’s trash on three occasions between July 3rd and August 28,
2008. On at least one occasion, after they took the trash, the officers brought it to a
private law office in Westlake. (Doc. 56, pp. 54-57; Doc. 55, p. 46) The officers wanted
to go through the trash at a “secure location” so that the investigation could remain
covert. (Doc. 56, pp. 54-55; Doc. 58, p. 31) The material that they recovered from the
trash pull further linked Joseph Montelon to the letter writing campaign. (Doc. 54, p. 72)
ED Note:(emphasis mine)
The affidavit also advises that through an “anonymous tip” police learned that Joseph Montelon was the author of the “menacing letters”
In times of concerns the “public” when feeling thwarted by “officialdom” or the system will inevitably turn to the media- Why? they believe them to be a trusted source in order to get their story out- they hope they are unbiased- fair and balanced- they know once the media is involved things tend to happen. Channel 19 claims “when the system lets you down we will be there to back you up”
To me as I read the statements in the depositions that have been documented under oath Mr. Puente was the source for naming Mr. Montelon I have to believe in this case the reporter, Mr. Puente crossed an ethical line – to get chummy?? to get a by line on a bigger story?- who knows why- but he has done his previous employer , in my humble opinion, a disservice along with professional journalism. In this case there are a number of reputations that have been tarnished and sadly along with those tarnished reputations we can add one more . And the wordsmithying abounds……