Thursday, January 31, 2008

WBRE linked to reduction of charges in 'to catch a predator' case

David Weiss reports in Thursday's Times Leader that a man originally charged attempted statutory sexual assault and other crimes got the most serious charges dropped and avoid jail time because of WBRE-TV's heavy involvement in the man's arrest. The story and the man's attorney don't spell it out, but strongly imply it. Agent Andy Mehalshick (pictured interviewing someone for a completely unrelated story) says "We don’t pretend to be the police... I don’t tell them to do it or not do it." Right.

62 comments:

Anonymous said...

"We don't pretend to be police." Yeah, that's a good one!

Anonymous said...

If a girl invites you to her house and offers you sweet tea, RUN!

Anonymous said...

That WBRE project was a totally inappropriate series from start to finish. The stuff is only beginning to hit the fan on this, trust me. Andy Mehalshik has no scruples, no sense of proportion, and no integrity. He's in bed with every law enforcement source who will sleep (or golf)with him. I bet in the end they will blow dozens of prosecutions over this. I like the headline, "Scumballs Walk Because of Cowboy Andy."

Anonymous said...

I have know Andy for over 25 years and have never met anyone in this business more commit his family and work. For you to come on this board and make those comments is totally inappropriate. And of course you don’t have the guts to attach your name to your posting. Very courageous.

Anonymous said...

I meant committed....

Anonymous said...

When there's a negative police story, Andy runs and hides. He knows he can't get the job done with skills and honest hard work. Andy has to bend over to get what little information he has.

Anonymous said...

I'm no fan of Andy's work. His tendency to report stories without the facts to back them up and be buddy-buddy with police bother me. But, the comments by 1:24pm are way overboard. He's a good family guy and far from being a scumball.

Anonymous said...

WBRE's involvement in the cases was majorly sensational, but it is great TV. With that said, the station lost tons of journalistic credibility by appearing to be in bed with the police. I mean, everything about that station from the all-male "I Team" to the way it kisses police arse is creepy. They all seem like wannabe cops. The slogan "On your side" is ridiculous. The whole point of journalism is that you're not on anyone's side -- you're neutral.
Despite all that, I don't understand how a sicko gets off on felony charges because of the station's involvement. He still showed up. Why did he catch a break?

Anonymous said...

the same thing has happened to some of the Dateline cases in Texas.

Anonymous said...

Amen 1:57!
Andy may not be Peter Jennings, but he is a good guy, a great family guy, and he honestly wants to get these dirtbags off the street.
His aproach is a bit John Walsh-ish,
But he does mean well.
Stop ragging on Andy, and come up with a better way to get rid of these disgusting child predators.

Anonymous said...

( approach )

Anonymous said...

“I would remind you that extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice! And let me remind you also that moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue."
---Barry Goldwater


I'm not sure I see much wrong with a TV station going on a crusade to catch the bad guys. It's more of a public service than running a listing of this week's church bingo nights.

Anonymous said...

Not very original programming, since NBC already was doing it nationally.
It's no longer good TV unless you are the sort who enjoys Jerry Springer type stuff. There are only so many times you can watch some dopey white guy try to give a reasonable explanation as to why he drove 500 miles to meet an underage girl he met on the Internet. The concept has run its course and overstayed its welcome.

Anonymous said...

To hell with the "CONCEPT", this is a real problem. If some "dopey white guy" RAPED your daughter would you still think:The concept has run its course and overstayed its welcome.
What an ass!

Anonymous said...

7:09 PM:

Police officers will continue to arrest child rapists, whether they're being filmed or not.

Anonymous said...

I'd rather have the bastards on film for the world to see. Especially when they are upstanding citizens who secretly pray on children.
They are exposed so that people who had contact with them can be aware that their neighbor,teacher, priest , doctor or coach is a molester.

Anonymous said...

prey (unless it's a priest molester)
nice slip!

Anonymous said...

i dont give a fuck if andy wears a clown suit and stands on his head whistling "sensual seduction" out his ass...as long as they get these
child molesting scumbags off the streets.
way to go andy!

Anonymous said...

I guess it's none of our faults as fathers if our daughters talk to these weirdos in the first place.

Anonymous said...

11:53, that' just the point. One of these scumbags is back on the street because Andy had to get ratings

Anonymous said...

Saint Andrew is just looking for a cheap ratings stunt and to suck up to police.

Anonymous said...

Too much cop and robbers stuff on BRE. And it's obvious that Andy is involved in a lovefest with the local cops, especially the ones in Butler Twp. Enough already; report the news, don't participate in generating it.

Anonymous said...

And what makes this even more sad...the guy is back on the streets, and 28's ratings are in the tank.

Anonymous said...

Andy's an asshat.

Anonymous said...

I found it interesting that Andy said, according to the story, that "the stings are conducted by police, with some involvement by station employees.

"'We don’t pretend to be the police,'" he said. "'I don’t tell them to do it or not do it.'"

So the Butler Township police just had this crazy idea to do these stings and bring Andy along, huh?

This was clearly the idea of someone in the news station; to take a sensational -- an not in a good way -- idea and localize it. This "we just went along for the right" stuff is just bullshit.

Anonymous said...

It was clear that Dateline was doing these for one reason-- the confrontations made for great television. I have to admit it was hard to look away.
WBRE started doing them for the same reason. Tackling a guy and sticking a mic in his face while he is rolling around in a motel parking lot makes for great television. WBRE hoped this stunt would attract viewers. They didn't care then, and they don't care now, that a) they should not be in bed with the cops, and b) some slimeballs will actually walk because of this grandstanding.
And of course their ratings have continued to fall, as could easily have been predicted.

Beautiful, Andy.

Anonymous said...

Friday's T-L carried an editorial against WBRE's tactics. Could it be because WBRE is partnered with the T-L's competition? Makes me wonder if the same thing would have been written if WNEP was involved with the sting.

Anonymous said...

To anon 2:41, what you might not realize is that the TL and WBRE have cooperated on several occasions during the years - sharing photos, press releases, etc. Although WBRE is part of the alliance, the rank-and-file workers at BRE and the TL really don't pay that much attention to it and cooperate with each other when it's in their interests.

Anonymous said...

Hey totally off the track......MEDIA ALERT........RECENT CITIZENS VOICE HIRE JOANNE SMILEY.......SHITCANNED....LEFT THE BUILDING IN TEARS......MEDIA ALERT..

Anonymous said...

WTF?

Anonymous said...

1:59 boo fucking hoo
They should have tackled the dirtbag and stuck the mic up his ass not in his face.
I love all the outrage over Andy going after these pieces of shit.
I don't care if it is for ratings or sport: EXPOSE CHILD RAPISTS ON TV!
Even if they "get off" they have been out-ed.
Way to go Andy!

Anonymous said...

6:03 a.m., I agree with most of what you wrote. However, remember that there are still thousands of desperate, pathetic women in NEPA who will date child rapists and let those rapists into their own child's life, even if the guy was already on the news. I'd much rather this piece of shit behind bars than see him on the news because he raped his new girlfriend's kid, too.

Anonymous said...

There's a child rapist dating service out there? Craig's List for pervs?

Andy's series isn't about bad choices made by desperate housewives--it's about tracking down would-be molesters.

No one has mentioned that Andy helped bring down the ball team's mascot as he was on the prowl. THAT'S public service!

Anonymous said...

No one has answered a fundamental question of "Would those guys have been busted without Channel 28's involvement?"

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
No one has answered a fundamental question of "Would those guys have been busted without Channel 28's involvement?"

9:27 AM, February 02, 2008

----------------
What a stupid question?
Of course they would've been busted whether or not 28 was involved. Face it, 28 tagged along for video, i.e. ratings. And consider the police departments: Andy is a personal friend to cops with Butler Twp and White Haven.

I think the fundamental question should be: Would Andy get invited along if the stings were in W-B, W-B Twp., Kingston, Dallas, Plains Twp., Hanover Twp., Nanticoke, etc. I give credit that one of the stings happened in W-B Twp. at the mall, but that was done by Butler Twp. police.

I don't see 28 tagging along on drug raids.

Anonymous said...

IT IS ABOUT SHOWING THESE PIGS ON TV and
SHOWING THEIR CO WORKERS NEIGHBORS AND FRIENDS!
EXPOSE CHILD RAPISTS!

Screw all you petty Andy haters!

Anonymous said...

Amen 4:26!

Anonymous said...

There are three issues here:
1)WBRE coverage
2)Getting child predators off the streets
3)showing who they are so that local people will know if it is a neighbor or priest, teacher, coach.

You may not agree with #1
But I believe that everyone can agree with 2&3.
It would not matter who the television person was as long as the predators were being shown on tv for everyone to see.

Anonymous said...

You are correct Sir!

Anonymous said...

Given WBRE’s anemic ratings, I’m sure more people read about it on the editorial page of the TL than watched it on TV.

Anonymous said...

You can show 'em just as easily with a standard perp walk. And their names are publicized freely so the argument that Andy needs to be involved doesn't hold up.

Anonymous said...

Kudos to the Butler Twp. cops for allowing Andy along. If more cop-shops cooperated more often with the media perhaps (I'm not saying definitively, just perhaps) such busts would have a deterrent value.

But most police around here are afraid to deal with the media. Most have a Barney Fife complex combined with a John Wayne attitude. Ever wonder why "Crimestoppers" is so big in so many cities and non-existent here? Because local police are reluctant to admit they need help.

There isn't a truly professional law enforcement agency in this corner of the state--and the donut-eaters are afraid if they let us look behind the curtain we'll all find out.

Anonymous said...

10:53 is RIGHT ON!

8:34 is an ass and hates Andy.
I don't care who does it: Andy, Mike lewis, Joe Snedeker, or Santa Claus as long as it gets done.

Anonymous said...

How about Ryan Lickey from 16?

Anonymous said...

Ryan? As reporter or as perp?

Anonymous said...

Perp

Anonymous said...

or victim

Anonymous said...

I can't believe Gene Padden is going into the Navy.

Anonymous said...

2:12 go look at Gene's page on this site you'll get an eye full.

Anonymous said...

Ryan Lickey/Gene padden?
Hmmmmmmm.....

Anonymous said...

"Ryan Lickey/Gene padden?
Hmmmmmmm....."
3:00 PM, February 04, 2008


Enough with the phony Chinese accent.

Anonymous said...

In the navy
you can sail the seven seas,
In the navy,
you can get down on your knees...

c'mon everybody sing!!!

Anonymous said...

The "Village People Guy" has struck again!
He ROCKS!
Shut you sucka's down!

Anonymous said...

1:59 2/1
Agreed.
All you simpletons who think WBRE is just targeting pedophiles out of the goodness of their hearts are fools. Most of the guys have been from out of the area. Peds in this area will go out of the area for their Internet victims. Get real. This is sensationalist journalism du jour. Andy is not being original, nor is he doing anyone a service. Cops don't need him tagging along to do their jobs. This is Jerry Springeresque TV for ratings. It failed.

Anonymous said...

2:51 Thanks!
You are right too.
I just wish the cops would target the perverts in this area. It would be interesting to see who is in our own backyard.
I don't care who does it, I don't care about Andy, I just want these pigs to be exposed to the public, not hidden and allowed to keep their anonymity.
1:59 2/1

Nealepkz said...

Ryan? As reporter or as perp?

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