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We report stories every day. But I don’t think the media spend enough time explaining why we report the stories we do. Tonight has been a difficult night of decisions. Shortly before our 6pm newscast, Urbandale police emailed a news release telling us a 13-month-old girl had died in her babysitter’s care yesterday afternoon. It seemed a bit odd the release came more than 24 hours following the girl’s death. The caregiver operated in-home child care. Here’s what we don’t know: police aren’t saying whether the little girl’s death is suspicious in any way or whether this is a terribly sad accident or death from natural causes. That’s what’s make the decision-making so difficult for us.

We chose to air a story based on the police accounts but we are trying to be sensitive to everyone involved. We are not identifying the specific address of the home or caregiver’s name. We will, of course, do both if police later say something criminal in nature has occurred. But, again, police have said nothing of that sort so far.

We realize no matter what, at least two families will never be the same and their grieving will likely never end. We will stay in contact with police to find out whatever more we can on what happened. No matter what, this isn’t pleasant for anyone.

I welcome your thoughts.

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