After Peterson Verdict, Papers Rush Extras to Street

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(AP) Daily newspapers serving this city rushed editions to the street immediately after the Scott Peterson verdict, lending an old-fashioned feel to the courthouse scene as hawkers shouted “Extra, Extra” to an appreciative crowd.

When the guilty verdict was read, the Redwood City Daily News and the San Mateo County Times hustled to publish extra editions, which received prominent display on the cable television networks covering the case.

“We actually have guys walking down the street shouting ‘Extra Extra — Scott Peterson guilty,'” Redwood City Daily News Publisher Dave Price said. “Some of these guys don’t speak English so well, so I worked with them to make sure they got it right.”

The Daily News published 10,000 copies of an eight-page special edition under the headline “Guilty: Crowds Cheer Verdict.” The free copies went quickly in the crowd of hundreds outside the courthouse. Onlookers cheered and waved them over their heads.

The Daily News compiled most of its special edition in advance, and the verdict story was written in about 15 minutes, Price said. The edition cost the newspaper about $5,000.

The San Mateo County Times, an afternoon newspaper, delayed its final 1 p.m. press run by an hour when the court announced the jury had reached a verdict in the double murder trial.

The Times’ banner headline, “He’s Guilty,” was superimposed over Peterson’s photograph, and the first copies rolled off the press 48 minutes after the verdict was announced.

“It was all planning and getting things done ahead of time … and slamming things out,” City Editor Bill Bucy said. “Actually, it was a lot of fun.”

The paper distributed at least 650 copies at the courthouse and 12,000 to 13,000 copies in the eastern San Francisco Bay area, where it has a number of sister papers aligned with the Alameda Newspaper Group.

Readers appreciated the speedy distribution of both newspapers.

“How did they do it so quick? They’re fast,” marveled 43-year-old Beverly Perez of San Mateo, who drew devil horns over Peterson’s photo.

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