Perhaps I missed the news report in the Pioneer, and if so, please accept my apologies in advance. On Saturday, April 15, while reading the Minneapolis Tribune, an article headline caught my eye that read "Two employees are charged with stealing drugs from pharmacy." Reading further I discovered that the employees were from the Red Lake Hospital and face criminal charges for allegedly stealing large doses of prescription painkillers.

Apparently this has been an ongoing investigation by the FBI for some time, and with the large quantities of drugs involved, one could easily speculate that others are likely involved. So it puzzles me that with such a high profile criminal case as this, that the area's largest newspaper wouldn't choose to cover it.

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Not long ago there was another newsworthy story that broke in the Minneapolis Tribune regarding an investigation by the FBI as to an allegation by a former Red Lake law enforcement official of possible criminal activity involving drugs and a police cover-up which somehow went missing by the Pioneer.

So my questions are, is this not newsworthy, or is the Pioneer choosing to ignore such activity for other reasons? As journalists, isn't there a responsibility to your readers and to the public to report the news even when it may not be popular for some to hear? I understand that the Minneapolis Tribune is a very large newspaper with an experienced staff of journalists, but it would seem to me that when it's in your back yard, you might be able to scoop them.

You owe your subscribers as well as the citizens of the area an explanation for your lack of pertinent news coverage.

John Brink


EDITOR'S NOTE: The story about the allegations by a former Red Lake law enforcement officer ran Feb. 22 in the Pioneer. The story about the Red Lake Hospital drug thefts ran May 1, after the receipt of John Brink's letter.