With trial evidence inconsistent with the news’ narrative, there could have been a major media mea culpa. Instead, headlines and framing continue that pre-trial narrative, even if inconvenient facts appear deep down in the articles. As the editors who run these stories and draft the headlines know, many if not most people don’t get far beyond the headlines and opening paragraphs.
Thus, NBC News breathlessly headlines a news report about the prosecution’s forensic pathologist testifying that Rosenbaum was in a “horizontal” position, “suggesting the victim wasn’t a threat when he was gunned down.” It’s not until the bottom of the article that NBC acknowledges that same expert testified the wound positioning was consistent with Rosenbaum diving towards Rittenhouse. Left out of the story was his testimony that gunpowder residue was consistent with Rosenbaum grabbing the muzzle of the gun when he was shot, just as Rittenhouse and witnesses said.
The headline highlight of Grosskreutz’s testimony according to a Daily Beast report was that he “tried to surrender” to Rittenhouse. Similar misleading narratives frame the case at the New York Times, Washington Post, USA Today and elsewhere. Reading only these publications, it would be reasonable to believe the original story of Rittenhouse as a shooter run amok, despite the trial testimony to the contrary.
From the inception of the Blake shooting, to the riots and now to the Rittenhouse trial, media malpractice has framed a Kenosha narrative completely divorced from reality.