Joseph Talbot, a bank executive, was arrested by New York State Police on Dec 29 for DUI, and, as its custom, the Times of Wayne County published his name and mugshot -- something it's done for every local arrest for 28 years.
During his arrest, Talbot reportedly expressed his displeasure at the knowledge that he, too, would be featured in the Times, and took (unsuccessful) steps to prevent that. Having failed to keep his mugshot out of the paper, he is alleged to have visited many local newsagent the next day, buying up hundreds of copies of the day's edition, apparently in a bid to prevent anyone from seeing the report of his arrest.
However, more than 80% of the papers printed are distributed to subscribers' doors -- and anyone can just visit the paper's website, should they have trouble sourcing a print edition at a newsstand (as the Washington Post dryly notes, "this being about 20 years after the rise of newspaper websites, there was another means of circulation as well").
Jill Humphries was working at Joey’s Northside Grocery in Newark on Saturday. “The gentleman came in and he picked up all of the Times papers that we have,” recalls Humphries. The fellow grabbed all the paper on the rack in front of the store and asked: ‘Is this all you have?’ and I said, ‘No, we have more.’ Then he asked, ‘Well, when you run out, do they come and bring more or once you’re out your’e out?’ ” Upon learning that the paper doesn’t normally get another shipment, the man asked for the whole shebang — all the ones in the rack plus 100 waiting in the wings. “He said, ‘Okay, I’ll take them.’ ”
As this transaction was going down, another customer in the store sensed that there was a run on the copies of the Times of Wayne County. “She said, ‘Save me one,’ and he didn’t.”
Story goes viral after man scoops up hundreds of newspapers in attempt to hide DWI arrest [Patti Holdraker/Times of Wayne County]
Man buys stacks of local newspapers following DWI arrest [Erik Wemple/Washington Post]
(via Marginal Revolution)