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Washington Post Reporter Suspended Over Her Response to Kobe Bryant's Death

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A Washington Post reporter who tweeted about past rape accusations concerning Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant after his death on Sunday has been suspended by the newspaper.

Reporter Felicia Sonmez had tweeted a link to a 2016 Daily Beast story about the 2003 allegations. She later deleted the tweet.

“National political reporter Felicia Sonmez was placed on administrative leave while The Post reviews whether tweets about the death of Kobe Bryant violated The Post newsroom’s social media policy,” Washington Post managing editor Tracy Grant said in a statement, according to The Wrap.

“The tweets displayed poor judgment that undermined the work of her colleagues,” Grant said.

On Twitter, some speculated that Sonmez was suspended for showing the contents of her inbox in one tweet, which would have displayed the names of those communicating with her.

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Sonmez tweeted a link to the article with no caption.

After Twitter had a meltdown over her tweet, she followed up with her thoughts.

“Well, THAT was eye-opening. To the 10,000 people (literally) who have commented and emailed me with abuse and death threats, please take a moment and read the story –which was written 3+ years ago, and not by me.

Was the Post correct to suspend this reporter?

“Any public figure is worth remembering in their totality even if that public figure is beloved and that totality is unsettling. That folks are responding with rage & threats toward me (someone who didn’t even write the piece but found it well-reported) speaks volumes about the pressure people come under to stay silent in these cases,” she wrote.

In another since-deleted tweet, she wrote, “As an addendum: Hard to see what’s accomplished by messages such as these. If your response to a news article is to resort to harassment and intimidation of journalists, you might want to consider that your behavior says more about you than the person you’re targeting,” according to Business Insider.

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Twitter was merciless in attacking Sonmez, while others rose to her defense.

Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna were among those killed when a helicopter in which they were passengers crashed Sunday afternoon.

In the 2003 case Sonmez cited, Bryant was charged with sexual assault and false imprisonment. A civil lawsuit was also filed, which was later settled. The case was never tried.

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Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.
Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.
Jack can be reached at jackwritings1@gmail.com.
Location
New York City
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Foreign Policy, Military & Defense Issues




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