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Caught on video: Is it relevant the man firing the shots is a retired firefighter?

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Read another view on this topic from Linda Willing

You may have seen this video making the rounds since yesterday (Wednesday). A question for you: Is it relevant that the man firing multiple shots into these AT&T utility trucks is a retired firefighter?

Most of the news articles have this fact in the headline or at least mention in the story that 64-year-old Jorge Jove of Hialeah, Florida worked at Miami-Dade Fire Rescue for 34 years.

I ask the question because so often readers of this site get upset with the news media — and sometimes me — over reports that mention the occupation of someone in trouble when it turns out they are currently or formerly employed in public safety. The argument is that when the crime has nothing to do with the employment why is the employment mentioned?

It’s usually easier to defend the mention when someone is a current firefighter. Often the arrest will have an impact on employment. The other argument is that the the public expects those in public safety to be helping and not hurting us.

For someone, like Mr. Jove, who has been retired for many years, the connection may be harder to defend. But when you see the outrageous and dangerous actions on this video one of your first questions likely is who is the guy with the gun?

The reporter’s job is to try to answer that question and part of that answer may be this guy spent a career helping people as a firefighter.

I’ve given you the arguments from a reporter’s perspective. Give me yours.

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