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AP Fires Investigative Journalist Behind Retracted Report Saying ‘Russian Missile 2 Killed in Poland’

James LaPorta, an investigative reporter at the Associated Press (AP), was fired by the media company after a report said Russia had fired some missiles at NATO member Poland, killing two people. The report LaPorta reported on was widely shared but later removed by the AP. The company replaced the story with an editorial comment admitting the single source was wrong.

According to an Daily beast report, the AP later said the missiles were Russian-made and not actually fired from Russia. Missiles were “most likely fired by Ukraine in defense against a Russian attack,” it stated.

LaPorta’s news article had attributed “a senior U.S. official” as the source of the information, which the AP later said violates the rule that it “routinely seeks and requires more than one source when the sourcing is anonymous.” The only time a single source is considered sufficient is when the information comes from an authoritative figure and is very detailed, according to an AP statement.

La Porta later took to Twitter to thank fellow journalists who approached him “with words of encouragement and kindness”.

An AP spokesperson was approached by Confider, but declined to comment on LaPorta’s impeachment. Instead, he wrote, “The Associated Press’s rigorous editorial standards and practices are critical to AP’s mission as an independent news organization.”

The new piece was originally co-written with John Leicester (who still works at the AP). Earlier in 2013, AP had fired reporter Bob Lewis over a false report alleging that then-Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe had lied to a federal investigator.

It’s unclear who edited LaPorta’s report in question and whether they were penalized for the error.

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