Working as a Team: Manhunt

Last week, Louisa and I really proved what it means to be a team.

I’ve never been prouder of the work that we’ve done.

On Wednesday, I took the reins, with two stories and a timeline of what had happened on Tuesday.

Louisa went to court on Wednesday, though, for the arraignment of Samuolis, to make sure we had that angle for Thursday’s paper.

I have to be honest, I felt bad that I took her beat from her.

I don’t know how she thinks about it. I have yet to ask her. I mean, I was the only one in the newsroom at the time of the call. Even if I didn’t want to go, I had to.

Thursday’s paper again was full of coverage of the manhunt. She had an updated police report story and I had another eyewitness story, with a little bit from Mayor Ernest Eldridge. I think that was a great balance. We were able to mix the facts of what happened, as well as what was new, with another perspective of someone in the community who lived through it.

Louisa actually had to prewrite, run back to court on Thursday morning and finish writing her story on deadline. It worked out well, since Danielson Superior Court is so close to Windham.

Thursday’s paper was one to remember for the photos alone. Our photographer had gone back to the house and gotten a picture of blood on the house from where wounded Willimantic Officer Kevin Winkler had crashed through a window after allegedly being shot in the arm by Andrew Samuolis. It was a tremendous paper and one that Louisa and I won’t forget anytime soon.

Louisa and I didn’t question each other. We worked together, helped each other answer questions and got the copy written. It was like we were on cruise control. Our stories weren’t perfect, I can admit that. We got the job done.

On Friday, I took the lead with an updated condition of the wounded officer and a reaction from a lieutenant in the department. It made for a nice, easy update and provided some insight into how the department was holding up. I didn’t see that in any other paper, which was nice. I think the community needed to read something like that. If anything, I wanted to know. And I’m glad I was able to get the opportunity to put that out there.

For Saturday’s paper, we had Winkler’s release from the hospital. It was more of a feature, but I made sure to rehash everything that had happened, including the charges against Samuolis.

I’m proud of that story, too. I was lucky to have gotten the opportunity to be there for his release.

Without Louisa, none of that would have been possible, though. It just wouldn’t have been able to have gone so smoothly.

I owe her.



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