Still haven’t had enough of Kimo? The following press release was received by PRO MMA (promma.info) on Wed., July 29, 2009:
JULY 28, 2009 – HUNTINGTON BEACH, CALIFORNIA—KIMO LEOPOLDO is alive, well, and still in the fight. The only thing dying here is the integrity of “news” website, TMZ.COM. The website, in its haste to be first to press with its “news,” printed, and later confirmed, a wholly fabricated article that LEOPOLDO was dead. The failure by TMZ.COM to do its due diligence before rushing to publish this story was a reckless breach of journalistic ethics with real fallout.
Chief in this fallout was the damage done to LEOPOLDO’s family. LEOPOLDO’s son became aware of the reports published by TMZ.COM, and was devastated. LEOPOLDO’s other family members, and friends, similarly were distraught and emotionally stunned by the news that had been “confirmed” by TMZ.COM.
LEOPOLDO, while dismayed at the reports of his death, and the effect these reports would have on his career as an athlete, voiced strong concern for his son’s well-being. “The health and safety issues related to my son’s emotional distress are really upsetting. He was inconsolable after hearing of these reports.”
TMZ.COM compounded the damage done when it published its false initial report by later “confirming” that LEOPOLDO was dead. Confirming the death of an individual without clear and convincing proof of that death is grossly irresponsible, and exacerbated the fallout that had resulted from the initial article.
TMZ.COM should be held accountable for its reckless disregard for the facts underlying its “news” reports. New Era Fighting, which represents LEOPOLDO, and LEOPOLDO’s promoter, Ron Kort, have been on the receiving end of a flood of inquiries regarding TMZ.COM’s false reportage. When TMZ.COM was contacted on this issue, however, the company pointed to its years of credibility, and unapologetically refused to further discuss the matter. To date, it has failed to issue any correction or explanation.
LEOPOLDO has retained the entertainment litigation firm DONIGER / BURROUGHS APC to protect his rights in connection with these recklessly published articles. According to firm partner, Stephen M. Doniger, holding media outlets responsible for reckless reporting is of great importance. “Media reporting must be about accuracy, not unsubstantiated sensationalism and a rush to be first. Reporting unverified rumors as truth is unacceptable, especially where those stories seriously hurt family members and mislead the public.”
FOR MORE INFORMATION REGARDING LEOPOLDO OR NEW ERA FIGHTING, go on-line to www.NewEraFighting.com, or contact Bob Trieger at Full Court Press, (978) 664-4482, firstname.lastname@example.org.