Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Court Mouthpiece Catches Flak

TMZ on TVImage via WikipediaAn eight-year veteran spokesperson for Los Angeles County Superior Court has been terminated for what he claim are untrue accusations that he leaked information to celebrity gadfly, www.TMZ.com

According to a story in The Los Angeles Times, Allan Parachini claims his purported link to TMZ is a smokescreen for the actual reason for his dismissal--ongoing tension involving himself and judges and court administrators who were reluctant to produce documents requested by media organizations that Parachini contends the journalists were entitled to receive.

Parachini, a former LA Times scribe who also worked for the ACLU, exacerbated the rumors that he was a source for TMZ by hiring former TMZ reporter Vania Stuelp to be his deputy. She has since returned to TMZ after budget constraints eliminated her post as Parachini's second-in-command. Parachini alleges he didn't endear himself to superiors because of his outspoken support for cameras in the courtroom.

Parchini's whistleblowing is self-serving as it came about after unsuccessful efforts to hammer out a severance agreement with his former employer. Nevertheless, "TUOL" has encountered court personnel and judges whose goal of achieving "pure justice" in a vacuum skews their attitude toward the news media and makes them partial to the U.S. Constitution's  Sixth Amendment over the First Amendment.

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