Best of AP — Honorable Mention


Brussels bureau’s teamwork leads to aggressive reporting in Belgian attack


The Brussels bureau team, consisting of senior producer Sylvain Plazy, video journalist Mark Carlson, photo editor Virginia Mayo, Benelux news editor Raf Casert, and newspersons Lorne Cook and Samuel Petrequin, delivered aggressive, dominating performance on one of the biggest breaking stories of the week when a gunman picked three Swedes traveling to a soccer game in Belgium and fatally shot them with an AR-15 rifle in downtown Brussels.

Plazy sped to the scene and immediately started live transmission while making photos. That set the tone for two days of industry-leading coverage. With tension rising in the stadium among the thousands of Swedish fans, Mayo made sure our freelance photographer also made time to shoot much-used video. After working through much of the night, text writers Cook, Petrequin and Casert got the immediate early morning break when news came that police had shot the suspect dead, leaving our competition behind by sometimes well over an hour.

At the prosecutor’s office, Mayo and Plazy got an exclusive interview with the top official discussing the potential motivation of the suspect. Early on the second day, Carlson set up his live shot in the best place, to the extent that even a local client had to call him to know where to send their crew.

The story dominated play for two days, landing twice in AP’s top 10. AP video edits the night of the attack drew more than 3,600 hits from AP video customers, and drew a staggering 1,250 hits on our live shots.

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