Defrauding the Daily Bulletin

(aka The Wire, Season 5)

In the 1870s, the Portland Daily Bulletin ran coverage critical of the Portland police. Editor James O'Meara accused them of inefficiency in suppressing and solving crime in the city, and raised the idea of limiting police funding. (e.g., as covered in the Oregonian )

The Portland police bureau retaliated by feeding a fake story to the Bulletin, detailing the discovery of the murdered and mutilated body of a missing man.

The Bulletin took the bait and ran the fake story, including the detail of the body's being brought up by the anchor of a ship putting out for sea; the skull fractured, throat cut, and 18 bullet-wounds in the body. History of Oregon Newspapers

Newspaper rivalry in Oregon was famously bitter in the pioneer period; harsh, personal commentary on rival editors and publications was known as the "Oregon Style" of journalism. Oregon History Project

Other papers, notably the Herald, delighted in the Bulletin's embarrassment. Three years later the Bulletin was out of business. History of Oregon Newspapers