Olympian Photographer Admits to Showing Police Unpublished Images

The Olympian has posted a story stating that Tony Overman, their photographer whose home was vandalized a few weeks back, had shown unpublished photos of rioters to police in the past. Overman, according to the story, had repeatedly denied doing this.

The act is a violation of the newspapers policies.

The issues here are complex. Journalists need to be trusted, they need to be independent of law enforcement agencies, in order for sources to open up to them. (In some states, acts like this may erode shield law protections.) Overman said it best:

“The problem that I’m wrestling with is that I did the right thing as a citizen and I did the wrong thing as a journalist.”

Are you a citizen or journalist first? Trying to determine which is the greater good is incredibly complex and very difficult to explain to a non-journalist.

Mark E. Johnson

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