ABC News suspended correspondent Matt Gutman for wrongly reporting that all four of Kobe Bryant’s daughters were on the helicopter with him this weekend. Bryant and his daughter Gianna died in the crash.
iMediaEthics has written to ABC News to ask how long his suspension will last and if it is paid or unpaid. We have also tweeted Gutman.
An ABC News spokesperson confirmed the suspension to iMediaEthics but declined to comment on the record regarding the terms of the suspension. ABC News did provide the following statement:
“Reporting the facts accurately is the cornerstone of our journalism. As he acknowledged on Sunday, Matt Gutman’s initial reporting was not accurate and failed to meet our editorial standards.”
ABC News also provided the following statement from Gutman: “We are in the business of holding people accountable. And I hold myself accountable for a terrible mistake, which I deeply regret. I want to personally apologize to the Bryant family for this wrenching loss and any additional anguish my report caused.”
As iMediaEthics previously reported, Gutman reported the claim during the breaking news that Bryant was among those killed when his helicopter crashed in Calabasas, California. ABC News told iMediaEthics it aired a correction.
Hat Tip: The Los Angeles Times
UPDATE: 10:51 PM With response from ABC News