The station did not staff the Henson trial last week, but it did send reporter Jeff Hager and a videographer to the Werdesheims' proceedings on some days, according to WMAR news director Kelly Groft.
"We relied on AP and file video from when we originally did the story," Groft said of the robocall trial.
As for the Werdesheims' trial: "We picked days when we would be in the courtroom based on what we thought was going to happen," she said
WMAR had Hager at the courthouse for a report on Thursday's verdict. The station also had a May "sweeps" piece Thursday night. It looked at the issue of Maryland doctors with drug and alcohol addictions. Here's how it was being promoted Thursday night by Channel 2 on Facebook:
"What would you do if your doctor started doing cocaine right in front of you?! It may sound like something out of a TV show, but that's just one of the unbelievable allegations Joce Sterman discovered in tonight's investigation. IN JUST 30 MINUTES get an exclusive look inside this world of troubled local doctors! Join us at 11pm on ABC2. Addicted Doctors Preview."
In fairness, the reporting was solid, and there was an online package with links that viewers could use to check for disciplinary actions taken against area doctors.
And, to be even fairer, it should be noted that making choices during such heavy news weeks is much tougher for stations with smaller newsrooms like WBFF and WMAR.
But the choices made by WBFF and WMAR suggest very different priorities.
David Zurawik appears weekly on WYPR through a content-sharing agreement with The Baltimore Sun, which also has a content-sharing agreement with WJZ.
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