Shameful: 'Today' Plays Heart-Rending 911 Tape of DC Madam's Mother

May 2nd, 2008 10:35 AM

What legitimate journalistic purpose did this serve?

In a segment narrated by Pete Williams on the apparent suicide of Deborah Jeane Palfrey, the so-called DC Madam, this morning's Today played the tape of the 911 phone call made by Pelfrey's 76-year old mother, who had discovered her daughter's body.

Of all the 911 calls I've heard, this was the most anguished and heart-rending.

A police officer was shown stating: "The mother is very distraught. Discovering your child in this state. It's not something that anyone wants to go through. You feel for the family. They're victims in this case."

True. Thanks in part to Today's heartless airing of a mother's anguish. For shame.

Aside: Today predictably exploited the story to roll tape of Sen. David Vitter's press conference of 10 months ago at which he apologized for his involvement with the call girl ring. NBC dutifully identified Vitter as "a Lousiana Republican."