The PIO is obscene

We daily newspaper reporters, of all people, are forgiving of those who make errors when working on a short timeline.

But, sometimes the press releases we get from local law enforcement are just laughable.

Take this one from Portland Police earlier this year, pointed out by our cops reporter Paul Suarez: “Media staging is now at Southwest 3rd and Morrison Street. PIO is obscene and will brief media as soon as as (sic) possible.”

Now THAT would be newsworthy.

A favorite move from local Vancouver Police spokeswoman Kim Kapp is to let us know that “no further information is available at this time.” (Seriously, a scan of releases showed something like five of the last seven finished with that. We get it — we won’t call you).

Of course, it’s late at night. And releasing too much too soon can compromise an investigation. But sometimes, we just don’t see the point in not filling in at least one more blank.

Take this release, from a sad tale of a fatal collision on Lower River Road, sent just before 11 p.m.:

“Vancouver Police responded to a collision involving a truck traveling eastbound on Lower River Road near mile post 4 that veered into the westbound lane, crashing into a van carrying nine people. When emergency personnel arrived they discovered one individual deceased. Three other individuals were transported to area hospitals with serious injuries.”

You think police would be able to at least let the public know which vehicle the person who died was riding in? We were left until nearly 3 p.m. the next day before more information was made available. Then, at the end of that short update, no more information was available, once again.

Oh, and no more blog is available at this time.

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