Raycom-owned WXIX Cincinnati was given the go-ahead to air an interview by a man accused of plotting to attack the U.S. Capitol. The man’s attorney had sought an injunction to prevent its broadcast.
A federal judge on Friday affirmed the right of Raycom-owned WXIX Cincinnati (DMA 36) to air an interview with Christopher Cornell, an Ohio man accused of plotting to attack the U.S. Capitol. The interview was scheduled to air at 10 p.m. Friday.
Cornell called the WXIX newsroom on Wednesday, expressing interest in sharing details about the allegations. In a one-on-one interview Thursday, he told anchor Tricia Macke his ideological views, revealed new details on his plan of attack and confessed to the plot.
A court order in the case was issued in January. Prior to the interview airing, Cornell’s attorney filed an injunction asking a judge to prohibit it. He also asked that WXIX and Macke be held in contempt of court, accusing both parties of violating a court order regarding access to Cornell.
Friday afternoon, Federal Judge Susan Beckwith ruled in favor of WXIX, allowing the interview to air. Beckwith ruled that the station did not violate the court order.
“Our intent was to inform and educate our community about a man who threatened public safety,” said Debbie Bush, WXIX VP-GM. “We always believed it is our obligation as journalists to air the interview.”
“We felt what Cornell said is important for our community to hear— specifically, his chilling confession and his warning about who else is engaging in similar behavior,” said Kevin Roach, WXIX news director. “We are pleased with Judge Beckwith’s decision.”