Friday, December 22, 2006

Man charged in 'Suffolk Ripper' case

Police remove items from Tom Stephens' house

A man has been charged with the murder of 5 prostitutes in Suffolk, England. It marks the climax of nearly two weeks of saturation news coverage.

Steve Wright, 48, from Ipswich, appeared at an Ipswich court surrounded by a media frenzy. He is charged with the murder of Gemma Adams, 25, Tania Nicol, 19, Anneli Alderton, 24, Paula Clennell, 24, and Annette Nicholls, 29.

All were killed in a 14 day period during early December. The media has been heavily criticized for their sensationalist coverage especially since the arrest of two men, Tom Stephens and Steven Wright earlier this week.

Tabloid newspapers in the UK have been particularly sensational with headlines such as "He begged me for sex... 4 hours later he was arrested" [Mirror 19/12/2006]. The arrest and charging of Steven Wright will now inhibit the details which news media are allowed to broadcast. But the saturation coverage is set to continue for sometime.

Meanwhile police have released Tom Stephens on bail. But he is unlikely to return home where police maintain a presence and where a tent remains in place in front of the property.

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