Publication Date: October 12, 2009
In The Murder Business, former LAPD Detective turned author, Mark Fuhrman, examines how media sensationalism of criminal cases and the reckless nature with which they’re treated publicly impedes the course of justice.
Mark Furhman is in a unique position to observe the media treatment of the media treatment of crime. Now a prolific author and media consultant, the former detective rose to the public consciousness when called to testify in the 1995 murder trial of O.J. Simpson. In The Murder Business, Fuhrman calls out certain shows and hosts that ignore journalistic ethics in their quest for crime as entertainment and highlights how their coverage of certain high profile cases perverted the course of justice and allowed responsible parties to walk away from the crimes they’ve committed. Along with the cases of Casey Anthony, Jon Benet Ramsey, Martha Moxley (and others), Fuhrman takes a look back at the case that made him famous, shedding an insider light on the crime for the public and highlighting the lines the media crossed in their coverage.
Fuhrman’s prose is damning in its objectivity — relating of cases in which the media meddled and shaped the narrative and hindered the job of police or made it impossible for an accused to have a fair trial. In the course of the 256 pages, Fuhrman provides insight into the folly and biases of networks, print journalists and commentary anchors. Fuhrman’s style is direct and plain speaking so that readers engage quickly with the subject. The after-the-fact information provided was shocking to this reader who, admittedly, is a reader of true crime and has an interest in the way the criminal mind works. An interesting sidenote of the piece is Fuhrman’s take on why suspects speak to the media before cooperating with police and how that desire to control the story backfires.
The driving force of the work is to beg caution in media reports. Fuhrman seeks to show his subject offenders how they’re running away with the story and not especially adhering to the facts hurts everyone. Fuhrman shows convincing that no one is served by sensationalism, and the media fight to be first with the story. As a person who listened to the O.J. Simon trial, I found interesting the evidence and facts not revealed during the course of the case causing a disconnect between the crime and information available to the decision makers in a trial.
The Murder Business is a fascinating read. At the end of the book, Fuhrman is both credible and someone who clearly cares deeply about the right thing happening in the pursuit of justice. If you’re looking for an interesting book for Human Rights Day as well as an inside look into the nuts and bolts of some of the famous cases of recent history, buy The Murder Business today.
If this sounds like a book for you, read on excerpt and buy The Murder Business: How the Media Turns Crime Into Entertainment and Subverts Justice by Mark Fuhrman on