This week during my reporting class at the Capitol, I decided to look into the Alyssa Bustamante case in an effort to produce an enterprise story. I found it very interesting that Bustamante has been taking Prozac since she was 13 – and I was surprised that I couldn’t find any news about that in all of her proceedings. I decided to investigate that. Not surprisingly, my news director didn’t buy it right away.
He wanted to know more, so I looked into it more. As it turns out, during a similar case in Canada involving a 15-year-old boy committing murder, his use of Prozac was deemed an acceptable argument in court. I gathered that along with other documented cases and information about the drug and its effects on adolescents, and finally Phill started coming around to my idea. He had me go talk with a legislator who said I was probably on to something.
Unfortunately, the day after I started looking into this, I learned that the Prozac argument was used during Bustamante’s hearing the very same day that I was looking into it at the statehouse. So, was it new by the time I got back Wednesday? No. Was it a good learning experience investigating the case? Yes. I definitely think I gained valuable reporting experience this week, and I think I can apply it to my work in J2150 as well.