Couric's 'Today' Show Coup Turns Sour
What had started out as a real coup for Katie Couric and NBC's "Today" show is now turning into a genuine embarrassment. On Monday, Couric, 45, held an exclusive on-air interview with Jacque Marris, 17, and Tamara Brooks, 16, who recounted their 12-hour ordeal of the week before of being abducted and assaulted in Southern California until they were rescued by police, who killed their kidnapper in a showdown. All three network morning shows had competed to interview the teens, but after "Today" got the nod, a booker for the show violated the network's news standards and bought Marris an $80 pair of pants, says the Associated Press. (The story first broke in the New York Post.) "Today" show spokeswoman Allison Gollust, speaking to the AP on Tuesday, labeled the purchase, which was obtained during a shopping trip, a gesture of sympathy and not a bribe. "NBC had already secured the interview before the taping. Our booker felt bad for someone going through such an emotional time," Gollust said, adding "It's still no excuse for violating NBC policy. Appropriate action will be taken." She did not specify what those measures might be.
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