Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Media silence on Extortion Threat against Daniel Grossberg

Last Monday, Joe Sonka broke the news at Insider Louisville that Daniel Grossberg, a candidate for State Treasurer in Kentucky, was being threatened by his former media consultant, Jacob Conway, with extortion.  Conway, in a tape recording, also made anti-Semitic comments.  Those comments were picked up by JTA News on Monday.  The JTA article was picked up, in turn, by the Forward.

Sonka's story was picked up by The Washington Free Beacon and the Independent Journal Review.

Now, outside of Joe Sonka, did any Kentucky media report on it?  Not really, no.  The Kentucky media was silent aside from Joe Arnold of WHAS-11 TV in Louisville.  Arnold's report, which focused on the extortion more so than the anti-Semitic comments, aired on Friday evening to lead off the 5:30 PM news.

I am privy to information that has not been covered anywhere in the media, including in Sonka's story.  I emailed this information to all the major newspapers, radio and television stations in Kentucky.  I reached out to the national media as well.  Aside from JTA and the Forward, there was no traction on that front.  The only person to respond was Joe Arnold.  In the interest of full disclosure, I know Joe Arnold and he follows me on Twitter.

What I do know is this:  The county attorney in Jefferson County has been looking into issuing an indictment against Jacob Conway for extortion and pursuing all criminal charges.  Daniel Grossberg, who was a candidate for state treasurer, was called in as an eye witness during the last week, where he was questioned by the county attorney, detectives, and handed over all evidence of extortion.

There is an investigation into extortion, harassment, hate crime, etc.—much more evidence than the tape.  As of this past Friday, they have hired a special prosecutor

The Courier-Journal and the Herald Leader should be ashamed of themselves.  If one is being extorted, I guess they need to be a basketball coach in order to make the front page, let alone the newspaper.  Joe Gerth was way too busy dealing with allegations against Jamie Comer that are over 20 years old (Let me stress: any form of domestic abuse is wrong).  Meanwhile, what happened to Grossberg was only recently and yet the Kentucky media was just nowhere to be found.  Though Gerth did have the following comments to say: "If any charges come of it later, I’ll be interested in following."

Who knows when the charges will be filed but that's beside the point.  The deafening silence, and I cannot stress this enough, is enough to make one bang their head against the wall.

Sure, the treasurer's race is a down-ticket race but it's still an elected position and what happened is sad.  The lack of media coverage, to say the least, is very frustrating.  If I were a publisher, I would be up in arms with my chief political reporter to ask why in the hell did they choose not to report anything on this!

To WAVE-3, WLKY, and WDRB, where were you during the last week?  I know that people from WAVE-3 follow me on Twitter and I've been pushing the above articles very hard on my Twitter account during the last week so it's not like they didn't know what was happening.

The CJ has a larger circulation than Insider Louisville.  It gets read by people who do not have the internet, like my grandmother for one.  And yet?  They were just silent like they didn't even care at all.

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