NBC Nightly News, The NY Times and FindLaw Blotter on American Sniper Verdict

Photo of Bradley Cooper portraying Chris Kyle in American Sniper.
Photo of Bradley Cooper portraying Chris Kyle in American Sniper.

Eddie Ray Routh was sentenced to life in prison.

On Tuesday, Feb. 24, 2015, Routh was found guilty of murdering Chris Kyle, former Navy Seal, who inspired the movie “American Sniper.”

Routh’s lawyers attempted reasoning with the court that Routh belongs in a state mental hospital because of his mental instability.

 Jacob Rascon of NBC Nightly News, reported from Stephenville, Texas when the verdict was announced. In Rascon’s package, he provided a screenshot of Taya Kyle’s Facebook post after the verdict. Kyle wrote on Facebook, “ god bless the jury and good people of

NBC Nightly News on Twitter.
NBC Nightly News on Twitter.

Stephenville, Texas.” Also in his package, he was able to show emotion through Kyle’s testimony in court and Chad Littlefield’s father breaking into tears when reflecting on his son’s death. Aside from projecting emotion, the package featured Cynthia McFadden, NBC News Senior Legal and Investigative Correspondent. McFadden spoke on how unsuccessful insanity pleas are in court cases.

On Twitter, NBC Nightly News sent out a tweet with Rascon’s handle and a clip of his package. This makes it easy for readers to view the clip, no waiting around for NBC to post the entire show online.

Manny Fernandez and Kathryn Jones, of The New York Times, reported on the jury’s verdict in finding Routh guilty. The Times highlighted on the “strange intersection of pop culture and criminal law.” They described how the courtroom was only three miles away from a movie theater that had been playing American Sniper. Fernandez and Jones provided an in-depth description of the tragic event. They reported on how the relationship between Kyle, Littlefield and Routh formed, what handgun Routh used and how many times he shot Kyle and Littlefield. The reporters also provided details of Routh’s mental history.

The New York Times on Twitter.
The New York Times on Twitter.

On Twitter, the NY Times posted the breaking news with a link to the article but did not provide the reporters Twitter accounts.

Christopher Coble wrote about the verdict on FindLaw Blotter. Coble used a listicle on “5 things to know about the trial.” The five things to know about the American Sniper trial and verdict are the Killing, Trial, Verdict, Punishment, and What’s Next? Coble’s blog was a concise and different way to provide information on the verdict.

On Twitter, FindLaw tweeted out the link of the article.

NBC Nightly News, The New York Times and FindLaw Blotter all covered the verdict in the American Sniper Trial. However, NBC was able to provide visual emotion through clips, the NY Times provided an in-depth article and FindLaw Blotter provided the facts in a concise listicle.

On Twitter, all news sites posted links to their stories but only NBC Nightly News provided their reporters Twitter handle. I found it unique how NBC provided Rascon’s Twitter account. It provides an instant connection between the reporter, his work and viewers.

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