Jessica Glenza (Class of 2011) was quoted in The New York Times today about a high school statutory rape story she broke as a reporter at The Register Citizen of Torrington, CT last month. Her story has been picked up by the national and international media fueling the debate about social media bullying and transforming the town she covers.
It has been an extraordinary run for Jessica since March 20 when she exposed a story of two Torrington High School football players accused of raping a 13-year-old girl and the vicious social media attacks against the victim made by young people in the community.
Jessica’s story, which includes Tweets from young people deriding the 13-year-old victim and defending the athletes, was immediately picked up by the Associated Press, and it ran in papers all over the country including The Seattle Times and The New York Times, which credited Jessica’s story in The Register Citizen. It was also picked up internationally, running in the UK’s The Daily Mail.
Her story mirrored the case in Steubenville, Ohio where two football players were convicted of raping a 16-year-old who was later also bullied online.
Jessica has been busy fielding interview requests since her story broke and was approached to appear on the Piers Morgan Show of CNN, although last time we exchanged emails that had not panned out.
Today’s story in The New York Times, which quotes Jessica, describes the effect this episode has had on the town and examines and the role of Jessica’s newspaper and her reporting, which is at the center of this.
The Purchase journalism faculty are all extremely proud of Jessica.
“Jessica audited my investigative reporting class last fall,” said Brian Kates, an adjunct professor and former investigative reporter at the New York Daily News. “Her passion for news was palpable and it was clear from the git-go that she has the right stuff to be a first-rate reporter. I expect big things from her, and clearly she’s off and running.”