Saturday, March 14, 2009

Wake Up For Breaking News.

We were on a story.  A perfectly good story over in East LA.  UTLA (United Teachers Los Angeles) were holding an informational rally at Roosevelt High School and we had already covered the story, cut the package, done our first liveshot and I'd already eaten a burrito.

The burrito is not a regular component of my work day, but still, it was a really good burrito.

I was with Juan Fernandez and I think we both were looking forward to just killing time until our next liveshot and mostly having an easy night.  Right.  We all know that's not how it works.

It was just after nine o'clock.  We got the call to break down and head up to North Hollywood where Howard Stern (Anna Nicole Smith's, not the self proclaimed King of All Media) was believed to be going to turn himself in to face charges being brought against him in connection with Anna Nicole's death.

We were going to stake out (sit around) the North Hollywood police station in the hopes that we might get a shot of him turning himself in.

Well, that didn't work out.

Before we'd managed to even get on the road good, the station called us with a breaker in Altadena.  The Sheriff's Department was investigating a home invasion robbery and the suspects were believed to have been impersonating law enforcement officers.

Shoot.  Now this was getting serious.  We were going to have to change gears and step up our game.

We were now heading to a possible lead story.  That meant gathering the facts, shooting the scene, getting sound from an official (and hopefully a witness), cutting a piece and going live.

There was no time for a proper lunch break, but I'm sure glad I had scarfed down that burrito. 

Maybe I'm getting jaded, but my life in news has been somewhat less than thrilling recently and i think that's why it took a moment to wrap my head around the idea and realize, HOLY CRAP, IT'S A BREAKER!

Heh-heh, breakers are always a "yee-haa" moment for me.

We made our way up Fair Oaks almost to the foothills above Altadena.  Deputies were working on the investigating part and we went about our business of quickly gathering shots and information to try to piece together what had happened.

We were the only crew on the scene.  Somebody's helicopter did a pass overhead, but no other stations showed up on the ground.

Well, you know I'm glad nobody was seriously hurt.  The robbers did get away with some cash and property, but I've been to robberies that got notched up to homicides.  I can only imagine how traumatic it must be to actually face that kind of situation.

Even though it didn't turn out to be really compelling enough to be a lead story.  We did two liveshots before heading back to the station.  Kind of a routine breaker (if there is such a thing).

I've always found it odd that a story like this might not be the biggest news of the night.  I bet the victim and maybe other residents of the neighborhood, they probably felt like it was a pretty big deal.
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1 comment:

#167 Dad said...

Good luck on the fiction projects.