Empathy Gap in Boston Dailies’ Colleen Ritzer Coverage?

From our Late to the Party of the First Part desk

The savage 2013 murder of Danvers High School teacher Colleen Ritzer has finally wended its way into court, and yesterday’s local dailies presented very different pictures of the initial legal proceedings and their effects on Colleen’s mother, Peggie Ritzer.

Jessica Heslam’s column in the Boston Herald:

Voice connects moms in teacher tragedy

Peggie Ritzer’s face creased with anguish as the recorded voice of another mother on the other side of the 010915chism008courtroom — the mom of the teenager charged with raping and killing Ritzer’s beloved daughter Colleen — brought her to tears . . .

Diana Chism was at the Danvers police station. Her son Philip had been found, the cops told her, but he was under arrest and they believed he had hurt somebody — a teacher.

“Oh my God, please don’t tell me somebody’s dead. Oh my God, I’m going to pass out,” Diana said on the dramatic recording, played in Salem Superior Court yesterday at a hearing to determine whether the teen’s statements to police will be tossed out.

Peggie Ritzer shed many tears yesterday, often cupping her face in her hands . . .


From the Boston Globe piece:

Ritzer’s parents, Peggie and Tom, were also there. When details of her daughter’s death emerged, Peggie Ritzer sometimes wept or hunched over and hung her head low.


Not judging. Just noting.

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