ABC News Suspends Reporter For Conveying Wrong Information About Accident that Killed Kobe Bryant and His Daughter

With the 24-hour news cycles that permeate the landscape in our current media world, sometimes journalists rush and report breaking news which sometimes may not be completely accurate. It was during the events of the recent tragic death of basketball star Kobe Bryant, his daughter, and the rest of the passengers aboard that helicopter that ABC News reported Matt Gutman did just that, and has now been suspended according to the LA Times.

What’s Happening:

  • Matt Gutman, a chief national correspondent for ABC News begun his time there in 2008 and reports across the network's programs including World News Tonight, 20/20, Good Morning America and Nightline, winning awards for his coverage of the BP oil spill, Trayvon Martin's shooting, the 2017 Las Vegas mass shooting and the Thai cave rescue.
  • On Sunday, when it was initially reported that a helicopter carrying basketball superstar Kobe Bryant and his 13-year old daughter, Gianna had crashed, Gutman was on scene and had reported that sources had told him that all four of Bryant’s daughters were on the aircraft. That report was later revealed to be false.
  • Gutman corrected the error in later reports, taking to the broadcast as well as Twitter to apologize for the misinformation.
  • It is unknown at this time how long Gutman will be suspended for.

What They’re Saying:

  • ABC News Representatives: “Reporting the facts accurately is the cornerstone of our journalism. As he acknowledged on Sunday, Matt Gutman’s initial reporting was not accurate and failed to meet our editorial standards.”
  • Matt Gutman: “We are in the business of holding people accountable, and I hold myself accountable for a terrible mistake, which I deeply regret. I want to personally apologize to the Bryant family for this wrenching loss and any additional anguish my report caused.”