Tendency to oversimplify Scruggs case occurs

One of the major goals of any type of news reporting is to distill information into a digestible format for a broad audience. However, the Scruggs case involves multiple defendants and stems from a multi-count indictment that alleges complex theories of conspiracy and inter-related criminal agency between the named defendants.

As expected, the defense attorneys in this case have embarked on what promises to be a thorough and sophisticated defense.

In most interviews, the “expert” is asked to put the legal or procedural issues “in simple terms.” While explaining the law in lay terms can certainly be helpful in informing an interested general audience, oversimplifying what is not simple can act to misinform rather than educate.

Marc Harold
Clarion Ledger
3/2/8