AP retracts story about Terry McAuliffe

The Associated Press Wednesday night retracted a story by Bob Lewis that said Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe allegedly “lied to a federal official” who was investigating an individual with whom he’d invested.

“The indictment did not identify McAuliffe as the ‘T.M.’ who allegedly lied to investigators,” AP’s removal notice says.

On Twitter, Lewis said the mistake was his:

“The initial alert moved on AP’s Virginia state wire at 9:45 p.m.,” AP spokesperson Paul Colford wrote in an email. “The story was withdrawn one hour and 38 minutes later. That was an hour and 38 minutes too long.”

Early Thursday morning, a few outlets still had up the first version, which led with this sentence:

Documents in a federal fraud case allege that Virginia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe lied to a federal official investigating a Rhode Island estate planner now imprisoned for receiving death benefits on annuities secured on terminally ill people without their knowledge.

An updated version begins:

Documents in a federal fraud case list Virginia Democratic gubernatorial nominee Terry McAuliffe among scores of those who invested with a Rhode Island estate planner who profited from death benefits paid on policies issued on terminally ill people without their knowledge. …

There is no allegation of wrongdoing by McAuliffe or that he or other investors knew of efforts to defraud the terminally ill.

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