Media an issue in Long Beach racial melee

A Halloween night attack on three white women by 20 to 40 blacks (according to the Press-Telegram) is causing a lot of community upset in Long Beach. One woman suffered a dozen fractures on her face, and they all got concussions, cuts and bruises and had their jewelry and clothes stolen. The crowd of males and females yelled racial slurs as they punched and kicked the women. Police have arrested twelve juveniles so far in the attack. A community forum Wednesday night drew a full house, even though the meeting was purposely not publicized.

[City Councilwoman Rae Gabelich] was questioned by several residents demanding to know why the forum was not announced until the day prior, and why even then the announcements were limited to only certain residences.

"I was trying to keep it out of the press," she said.

The councilwoman went on to say the forum was designed to help the neighborhood most affected by the incident and that having the media involved would only exacerbate the issue....

Gabelich started the forum with stern words about the news coverage, accusing the Press-Telegram and other media outlets of fueling "a growing fear and anger in the community."

The Press Telegram has been following the story, including an interview with the victims by Tracy Manzer.

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