State Official Tells Station to Remove Quote Said in Open Court

By Kevin Eck 

Charlotte, N.C., CBS affiliate WBTV says an official with the State Department of Transportation asked one of its reporters to remove a quote from a story on a hearing about a toll road.

The quote was said by an attorney arguing negotiations for the road were flawed.

“While I understand that you are directly quoting the attorney, this is a completely false statement, used as a scare tactic, and the judge clearly acknowledged that by ruling against all of their claims,” Charbonneau wrote. “We respectfully ask that you remove this quote from the article and soundbite from the package.”


WBTV News Director Dennis Milligan called the request from NCDOT “inappropriate.”

“In my 42 years of broadcast journalism, I can’t think of another time that a government official requested we remove something from a story that was said in open court,” Milligan said Monday. “We fairly and accurately represented both sides of the story.”