ABC News has suspended its chief national correspondent Matt Gutman for a totally uncorroborated on-air report he gave on the Kobe Bryant crash where he said, “four of his children are believed to be on that helicopter”:
ABC News has suspended Matt Gutman, chief national correspondent, for an inaccurate statement he made on-air Sunday following the death of Kobe Bryant https://t.co/Rs35qY5pm2
— CNN (@CNN) January 30, 2020
That was, thankfully, not true. But it spread like wildfire on the 26th:
Matt Gutman of ABC News just said on air that the other people who were on board with Kobe are believed to be his four children. Praying and hoping that is something that isn’t confirmed.
— Jay Wallis (@WFAAJayWallis) January 26, 2020
You can listen to the report here and see that why he said was totally unnecessary at the time:
Here’s the @ABC news report from Matt Gutman who says that all four of Kobe Bryant’s children were believed to be on board with him.
I hope this is unconfirmed and proves untrue. pic.twitter.com/lYupZ2mRbo
— Denny Burk (@DennyBurk) January 26, 2020
He was just filling time:
Said on air all 4 of his daughters were on board – no verification, no sourcing. Just said it. This was before any confirmation of any kind that one of his kids are on board
— Stephen Miller (@redsteeze) January 27, 2020
Gutman’s suspension is for an unknown period of time:
#BREAKING: @ABC News announces that chief national correspondent Matt Gutman has been suspended an unknown period of time for erroneously reporting on Sunday that all of Kobe Bryan's daughters were with him aboard the deadly helicopter flight https://t.co/VigntdVXwS
— Curtis Houck (@CurtisHouck) January 29, 2020
Even worse for ABC News, Gutman didn’t correct himself on air when he had the chance:
can’t believe ABC News had Matt Gutman report on the Kobe helicopter crash at 630p & didn’t have him apologize/correct his mistaken report hours earlier that ALL of Kobe’s kids were onboard. A huge error that needed to be addressed. The correction in a news break wasn’t enough.
— mike avila (@mikeavila) January 26, 2020
Only hours later did he do so:
Today I inaccurately reported it was believed that four of Kobe Bryant’s children were on board that flight. That is incorrect. I apologize to Kobe’s family, friends and our viewers. pic.twitter.com/yYwuB9vpZl
— Matt Gutman (@mattgutmanABC) January 27, 2020