Here’s another sign that the summer of crime is getting to the Muriel Bowser administration: Pressed on one flank by Black Lives Matter activists and on the other by a restless police union, Bowser administration officials are getting testy with reporters.
Consider the oddball graphic above, pushed out by an administration Twitter account last Thursday. That’s a reference to Washingtonian writer Harry Jaffe calling Metropolitan Police Department Chief Cathy Lanier Lanier a “princess” on NewsChannel 8’s NewsTalk (the station doesn’t have video online).
LL supposes this is a lesson learned for the Wilson Building press corps. Say something about the police chief, and Bowser’s staff will turn your remarks into this sort-of meme thing.
Also last week, Deputy City Administrator Kevin Donahue played assignment editor:
Chief Lanier was absolutely correct on @kojoshow: We need the media to provide coverage of ALL our murder victims – not just a few cases.— Interim Deputy Mayor Dr. Roger A. Mitchell, Jr. (@SafeDC) August 28, 2015
Bowser herself delivered the punchiest media criticism of the week, devoting time in her disrupted anti-crime speech Thursday to “erroneous reports in the media” about her safety plan.
That’s a not-so-veiled jab at the Post, which revealed Bowser’s new crime plan days before she announced it. But Bowser staffers complain that the Post story didn’t stress that the plan’s provisions to make it easier to search people on probation or parole will apply only to violent offenders.
“This is more directed to people who have a history of violent crimes, illegal guns, that sort of thing,” says Bowser spokeswoman LaToya Foster.
Top Bowser flack Michael Czin says the administration officials have a point about the media.
“There are clearly story lines that aren’t being reported on,” says Czin, who was on vacation last week.
Photo by Darrow Montgomery