NBC News President Steve Capus was on Hardball last night to defend his decision to air the Cho videos. Transcript here.
At one point, Capus assured viewers that NBC’s handling of the package was done properly:
CAPUS: Honestly, I don’t know. But the key is when it came in here, NBC security opened it and handled it appropriately and everybody
who touched it wore gloves to keep everything intact. And we immediately contacted authorities and that set forward the chain of events. And we worked with the authorities this afternoon to make sure that they knew everything that we did. And they requested that we not release some of the information until they had a chance to take a look at it. And we honored that request. And that was the right thing to do.
They wore gloves so everything is OK? Is it really the policy of the FBI to allow third parties to handle evidence in mass murder investigations? How did that conversation go?
Capus: Hello, is this the FBI? Great. I have a package here from that Cho fellow who killed 32 people in Virginia.
FBI: We’ll send an agent down immediately.
Capus: Well, no rush. This is what we’re going to do. I have my security guys looking at it now. We have gloves on and we promise not to smudge anything. We’re going to photocopy everything and make a copy of the DVD. That OK with you?
What makes this all the more ironic is that Steve Capus fired Don Imus last week for Imus’s inappropriate comment. It took Capus roughly a week to make that decision. The decision to release the video tapes was made in a matter of hours, if not minutes.