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Media Watch

Tough Go For The News Guy

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KGUN Channel 9 news anchor Guy Atchley riled at least one viewer during the holiday season with a story lead that opened the door for complaints of a double standard. The story involved the arrest of a 26-year-old woman for having sex with a 12-year-old boy.

Here's the transcript for the Dec. 29 10 p.m. newscast, which also includes a sound bite.

Atchley: A reported May/December romance has a Tucson woman in hot water. Tucson police accuse 26-year-old Veronica Bullock of having sex with a 12-year-old boy while the two were staying at a domestic violence shelter in October. Witnesses reported seeing the two kissing while the boy's mother was out with another resident. Police say the boy later admitted to having sex with Bullock.

Monica Prieto: This is certainly a unique case in that it is a male victim with an older female suspect. Usually about 95 percent of the cases are with male suspects.

Atchley: Police arrested Bullock this month during a visit with her children at CPS offices. She is charged with sexual misconduct with a minor, sexual abuse and child molestation. She is free on bail.

Prieto is a detective with the Tucson Police Department, and her recognition of the unique circumstances also brings to light the story's curious phrasing.

Had the roles been reversed, it's likely the "May/December romance" phrase would never have been considered, and the story would have been treated strictly in terms of its content, not in terms of gender positioning.

"I apologized to the e-mailer for the phrasing," Atchley said. "It was a tease (as in 'coming up next') written by my producer, which I failed to change before the 10 o'clock news. Bottom line: I agree that we should have promoted the upcoming story in a more sensitive way."


INTRODUCING NEWS NEWCOMERS

There are a few new faces on Tucson's local news stations.

At KVOA Channel 4, Amber Lyon and Lorraine Rivera are in the field. Lyon is a graduate of the University of Missouri journalism program. Rivera is a native of Douglas who interned at KVOA before landing the paid gig.

KGUN has added Mark Horner to its reporting staff, while Teresa Jun is getting assignments with KOLD Channel 13.

"I'm thrilled to be in Tucson reporting for KOLD News 13," Jun said. "I'm originally from Los Angeles, so I feel right at home under Arizona's sunny, dry skies."

Jun has a bachelor's in communications from UCLA and a master's degree in broadcast journalism from USC. Jun worked at KEZI in Eugene, Ore., prior to arriving in Tucson.

"As a journalist, you are constantly learning about the people and world around you," Jun said in her bio at KOLD.com. "I am discovering new things everyday about Tucson, and falling in love with the climate, culture and community."

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