Again, it's very hard for me not to see how this wasn't stupid police work:


Lucia Whalen, whose 911 call led to the arrest of the Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. at his home, made her first public comments Wednesday, saying at no time did she ever mention race to the responding police officer.

Ms. Whalen said that the only words she exchanged with Sergeant Crowley in person were, "I was the 911 caller." She said that he responded, "Stay right there."

Ms. Whalen, 40, her voice cracking, said she was deeply hurt by the reaction to the incident on July 16.

"When I was called a racist, I was the target of scorn and ridicule because of things I never said," she told the reporters gathered in a park here at midday. She added, "The criticism hurt me as a person but also hurt the community of Cambridge."

On Monday, the Cambridge police released the tape of Ms. Whalen's 911 call in which she told the dispatcher she had "no idea" if two men -- who turned out to be Professor Gates and his driver -- were breaking into the house, repeatedly mentioning that they might live there. She said that the two men pushed a door in with their shoulders, and that she was unsure "if they live there and just had a hard time with their key."

Ms. Whalen did not mention the men's race until a dispatcher asked her if they were black, white or Hispanic.

I am giving the benefit of the doubt here, and assuming the officer isn't lying. But again, journalists--of all people--need to stop confusing a police report with the truth.

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