Denver Fox affiliate KDVR has admitted that a report broadcast Saturday about an Italian gun executive who was detained by local law enforcement was incorrect.
The station says Karina Aguirre, who claimed to be the man’s U.S. attorney, “concocted an elaborate but false story” about a man who was detained after a taxi driver mistook him for “a terrorist.” KDVR says they were referred to Aguirre by David Kopel, an attorney for the Independence Institute in Denver, and Steve Schreiner, a Colorado board member of the National Rifle Association.
“More steps should have been taken to corroborate Aguirre’s story and verify information provided by Kopel and Schreiner,” news director Ed Kosowski said in a statement. “KDVR is committed to fair, accurate and balanced reporting and we are reviewing policies and procedures to ensure our content meets those standards.”
Neither Kosowski’s statement or the post on KDVR’s website address the fact that the station failed to reach out to law enforcement or the gun company to corroborate Aguirre’s story before the report aired. In a strongly-worded statement Wednesday, the Adams County Sheriff’s Office said KDVR “dropped the ball.”
“The Sheriff’s Office feels that it is unfortunate for Fox 31 Denver to have released a report that claimed the Adams County Sheriff’s Office involvement in an event without verifying it first. It is also unfortunate and disturbing for Fox 31 Denver to have released such a bold report before doing their due diligence by thoroughly investigating the tips prior to broadcasting,” the statement reads.
The Sheriff’s office also praised KUSA, the NBC affiliate in Denver, for uncovering the hoax.