Update: Sean Bergin is apparently out at News 12.
News 12 reporter Sean Bergin has been suspended for remarks he made on air regarding the recent ambush slaying of a rookie Jersey City police officer in which he surmised that the “underlying cause” of anti-cop sentiments is “young black men growing up without fathers.”
Bergin’s suspension was reported by The Blaze, citing an unidentified source. The site also noted that Bergin could lose his job over the incident.
In a statement to the Press, a News 12 spokesperson refused to confirm or deny the report.
“It is News 12′s policy that reporters must be objective and not state personal opinions on-air,” the spokesperson said. “In regards to the particular incident with Sean Bergin, the matter is being addressed internally and we don’t comment on personnel matters.”
When pressed for further details, the spokesperson responded: “We won’t comment beyond our statement.”
Bergin is a veteran reporter for News 12 Long Island, which is owned by Cablevision, but was reporting on the officer’s shooting in Jersey City.
The rookie officer, 23-year-old Melvin Santiago, was allegedly gunned down Sunday by Lawrence Campbell, who minutes earlier had told a Walgreen’s customer to watch the news because “he was going to be famous,” according to reports. Lawrence was fatally shot by police.
News 12 New Jersey on Monday aired an interview with the alleged cop killer’s wife who appeared unsympathetic and told the network: “He should’ve taken more [officers] with him.”
“Sorry for the officer’s family,” she added. “That’s you know, whatever. But at the end of the day he got family, too. All they care about is the officer.”
Bergin’s comments came during an in-studio segment responding to a deluge of phone calls “from police officers furious that he would give media coverage to the wife of a cop killer,” he said.
“It’s understandable. We decided to air it because it’s important to shine a light on this anti-cop mentality that has so contaminated America’s inner cities. This same, sick, perverse line of thinking is evidence from Jersey City to Newark and Paterson and to Trenton. It has made the police officers job impossible and it has got to stop. The underlying cause of all this, of course: young black men growing up without fathers. Unfortunately, no one in the news media has the courage to touch that subject.”
A search for the video clip on both News 12 Long Island and News 12 New Jersey’s websites turned up no results. A video of the segment, however, is on YouTube.
A Facebook group calling for Bergin’s reinstatement has already amassed more than 1,600 likes.
Some commenters on the group, dubbed “Bring back SEAN Bergin of News 12 LI,” expressed shock that he was reportedly suspended. One commenter vowed to boycott the network. Other fans voiced their support for the journalist.
“I enjoyed Sean Bergin on Channel 12 and would like to see him back there again,” read one post.
Bergin still identifies himself as a reporter for News 12 on his Twitter account.
He has not tweeted since July 10, when, ironically, he linked to a story about three-dozen news agencies critical of President Obama’s “suppression of news.”