The media will do anything to keep their narrative going.
Washington’s top medical examiner debunked a once-widespread media narrative on Monday by announcing U.S. Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick suffered two strokes and died of natural causes the day after he confronted Jan. 6 Capitol rioters.
Journalist Glenn Greenwald reminded readers that The New York Times “published an emotionally gut-wrenching but complete fiction that never had any evidence” by initially reporting, as Greenwald put it, that Sicknick’s “skull was savagely bashed in with a fire extinguisher by a pro-Trump mob until he died.”
The Times reported on Jan. 8 that Sicknick died from injuries sustained while physically engaging with pro-Trump rioters and cited two anonymous law enforcement officials who claimed he was “struck with a fire extinguisher” during the insurrection. House impeachment managers used the Times article as evidence in their impeachment pre-trial memo for former President Donald Trump.
Weeks later, the Times quietly updated its story to note new information “questions the initial cause of his death provided by officials close to the Capitol Police,” but the revision came weeks after the inaccurate information was initially published.
A separate Times story on Jan. 9 reported Sicknick died “from brain injuries he sustained after Trump loyalists who overtook the complex struck him in the head with a fire extinguisher,” but that version had not been corrected or updated as of Tuesday morning. A Jan. 11 piece still describes Sicknick as “the U.S. Capitol Police officer who died after being hit in the head by a rioter wielding a fire extinguisher.”
The chief medical examiner, Francisco Diaz, ruled on Monday that Sicknick, 42, died from “acute brainstem and cerebellar infarcts due to acute basilar artery thrombosis.” Diaz said the Jan. 6 riot “played a role in his condition,” but gave no indication he was struck by a fire extinguisher.