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.
— Jordan Fifer (@JordanFifer) October 10, 2013
On Twitter, Lewis said the mistake was his:
The error was mine and I take responsibility for it. http://t.co/2tGpw7Ye0n
— Bob Lewis (@APBobLewis) October 10, 2013
“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 “The story was withdrawn one hour and 38 minutes later.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.