Confusion over a court date and news coverage choices led to a former CBS-2 News anchor losing his temper and later apologizing for his actions.
Rob Morrison called the Darien Times Tuesday, expressing frustration that The Times published old news about his protective order being altered and that his court date was inaccurately reported.
Morrison faces felony strangulation charges for allegedly choking his wife, CBS MoneyWatch anchor Ashley Morrison, in February, a charge Morrison has said is untrue. Darien Police also claim he threatened to kill his wife while at police headquarters, which Morrison also refutes.
After insulting The Times and claiming its sources “suck,” the former news anchor also claimed this newspaper was not doing its due diligence.
Morrison was scheduled to appear in court on Tuesday, April 30. However, the office of his attorney, Robert Skovgaard, told The Times the case was continued until May 21. The Times asked the clerk’s office the day of the hearing and the day before, and was told the case had not been continued and that Morrison was scheduled for court on the 30th.
The Darien resident called The Times to complain that its online story about the date of his court appearance was wrong, but he became audibly irritated during the conversation, and resorted to insults and profanities in an attempt to get his point across.
In Morrison’s heated tirade, he repeatedly stated The Times’ sources “sucked.”
“Your sources suck in the Stamford Court, and the Darien Times — I know this is big time for ya, OK, but your sources suck, brother,” Morrison said. He then told The Times that the court clerk was the wrong source of information, and said the “D.A.,” or state’s attorney, was who should be contacted.
The state’s attorney did not respond to a request for information about Morrison’s court date. Morrison, however, said the “D.A’s office” is where court information should be obtained. New York’s prosecutors are called district attorneys, or D.A.’s, but in Connecticut they are called state’s attorneys.
After ending the conversation, The Times posted an online story about it, and about an hour later, Morrison called back. This time his tone was relaxed, his cadence slower, and he avoided using profanity almost entirely.
The Darien resident appeared to not take offense to The Times’ coverage of his profane tirade. Morrison also admitted that if he, as a journalist, received a call from someone who launched into a similar rant of expletives, “I would probably run with it, too,” he said.
The New York Post and other news outlets also picked up this story, including New York Magazine and The New York Daily News.
He eventually apologized, and said “No, I mean it sincerely,” alluding to the prompt given to provide an apology before continuing to discuss the root of his frustration.
Morrison then said that news of his protective order being altered, which happened on March 12, about a month after his arrest, was not “news” in the sense that it happened over a month ago. The order allows him to contact his wife to talk about his son, but he can only initiate one conversation per day. He also was forbidden from driving a car with his son as a passenger.
The Times published this information to accompany Morrison’s upcoming court date, which also was shrouded by conflicting information from the state and from Skovgaard, Morrison’s attorney.
“I was young once, and just starting out,” he said of journalism. He then lamented how the media coverage of his arrest has affected his young son. He agreed to be interviewed in the future, but declined to comment on how he would proceed in the current matter with his wife. He did say, however, “there’s not gonna be a trial.”
Originally published in The Darien Times.