(NEW YORK)— In response to news of a raid by local law enforcement in Marion County, Kansas, on the The Marion County Record, the newspaper’s reporters and publisher’s home and seizure of computers, cellphones, and reporting materials, PEN America’s journalism and disinformation program director, Shannon Jankowski, issued the following statement: 

Journalists rely on confidential sources to report on matters of vital public concern. Law enforcement’s sweeping raid on The Marion County Record and confiscation of its equipment almost certainly violates federal law and puts the paper’s very ability to publish the news in jeopardy. Such egregious attempts to interfere with news reporting cannot go unchecked in a democracy. Law enforcement can, and should, be held accountable for any violations of The Record’s legal rights.

About PEN America

PEN America stands at the intersection of literature and human rights to protect open expression in the United States and worldwide. We champion the freedom to write, recognizing the power of the word to transform the world. Our mission is to unite writers and their allies to celebrate creative expression and defend the liberties that make it possible. To learn more visit PEN.org 

Contact: Suzanne Trimel, [email protected], 201-247-5057