I am deeply concerned about the fact that the Steamboat Pilot & Today did not immediately report on the recent sexual assault that occurred in downtown Steamboat Springs. Reporting a rape one week after it has occurred is certainly not responsible and timely reporting. Other women unaware of the recent sexual assault could have put themselves in dangerous situations this past week walking alone downtown at night with a predator on the loose. Responsible and timely reporting would be to print a story on the assault the very next day in an attempt to warn women to take extra precautions. In most towns, this type of crime would be reported the very next day, and many times it would be reported on the front page. The Steamboat Pilot & Today waited more than a week to even report on this violent crime, and then they chose to bury the story on the fourth page. Obviously, the victim's privacy should absolutely be respected. However, simultaneously an article can be thoughtfully and accurately written to alert others in town.
I found out about this sexual assault through hearsay and a text message that was sent by a fellow resident to many women in Steamboat. This text message might not have been entirely accurate, but at least it communicated the frightening fact that a rape had occurred in our town and that women should be concerned for their safety. This text message did more to protect the women of Steamboat than our local paper.
The article printed Oct. 29 in the Steamboat Today regarding this sexual assault also indicated that other sexual assaults had been reported to the police in previous weeks. Why were these also not reported in respective articles in the paper after they occurred? How many rapes does it take to get this newspaper to step up and report the news? If there were a murder in Steamboat with the perpetrator on the loose would The Steamboat Pilot & Today wait a whole week to run an article in the paper? I doubt it. The Steamboat Pilot & Today always has seemed to avoid reporting on sexual assault. This is not the first time there has been a lack of reporting of this violent crime, but it is about time it is the last.