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HT This Day: April 17, 1981 — Phoney article bagged Pulitzer prize | Latest News India

A 1981 Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist has refused the prize and resigned her newspaper job as a result of the article which gained the award was a phoney.

Miss Janet Cooke, 26, whose lengthy article on the hellish world of the drug addict in Washington’s black ghetto was printed by the Washington Post final September, wrote a few younger addict named Jimmy who had begun taking Heroin when he was eight and who bought his day by day shot from his mom’s lover.

The article triggered a variety of star, however the police expressed doubt about its authenticity, They tried to determine Jimmy, and based on an announcement yesterday by Washington’s chief of police concluded that there was no such individual.

Miss Cooke admitted that Jimmy, the statements attributed to him and quite a few conditions described within the article have been invented. The Washington Post instructed the entire story after one other Washington newspaper, the Washington Star, revealed the scenario.

The Pulitzer Prizes are the United States’ highest journalism awards.

Announcing Miss Cooke’s resignation, Post Executive Editor Benjamin Bradlee stated: “Janet was a very promising and proficient younger reporter. She regrets these occasions as a lot because the Washington Post regrets them. “

Miss Cooke, who joint the Post in December 1979 after working for the Toledo (Ohio) blade, couldn’t be reached for’ remark.

Within a day after the award was introduced, questions have been raised concerning the educational credentials attributed to Miss Cooke in a biographical sketch issued by the Pulitzer Board.

She instructed the Associated Press on Tuesday that the sketch was correct, though officers of two faculties disputed it.

In the Post story, Miss Cooke instructed of watching the lover of the kid’s mom inject heroin into the boy’s arm. The story was printed at a time when an inflow of top quality however low-cost heroin on the streets of Washington had led to a surge in heroin use.

She additionally described how the kid had turn into hooked on medication.

The story had created a storm of controversy from the day it was printed with varied District of Columbia officers publicly expressing their doubt about its accuracy.

The Police Department tried to subpoena Miss Cooke and editors of the Post in an effort to search out the eight-year-old described within the article. The Post stated it could refuse to co-operate with them on constitutional grounds.

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