On August 5, blogger Mary Chastain reported at Breitbart.com that weapons sent to Mexico in the federal government’s deadly Fast and Furious operation were involved in an assassination attempt on a Mexican government official. From her painstakingly researched post:

Three weapons were recovered on February 25, 2010 in Tijuana, Baja. Two had the criminal code “Homicide – Attempted” and one had a non-violent code “Found Firearm.” These guns are connected to the assassination attempt on then Tijuana Municipal Secretary of Public Safety Julian Leyzaola.

Lo and behold, “real journalist” Diana Washington Valdez of the El Paso Times published an article the next day titled “Report: ATF gun part of plan to kill Juarez police chief Julián Leyzaola.”

Gosh that looks familiar. What a remarkable coincidence.

Credit? But Breitbart.com is just a blog and Mary Chastain is just a blogger.

No way this can come back to haunt a real journalist, right?

Wrong. Chastain harnessed the power of Twitter to draw attention to the obvious need for remedial ethics classes at the El Paso Times.

Chastain is still waiting to hear back. You’d think Valdez would be swooning over the chance to correspond with Chastain — clearly she’s a huge fan of the Breitbart.com blogger’s work.

But someone should let Valdez know that plagiarism is not the sincerest form of flattery.

It’s worth noting that The Daily Caller’s Matthew Boyle also covered the use of Fast and Furious weapons in the attempted murder of Julián Leyzaola. One glaring difference: Boyle actually credited Chastain for the scoop.

Exit question for the dinosaur media bullies at the El Paso Times: