FOLLOWING my regular purchase of the Penarth Times this week, I feel the need to express my views on your lead story concerning the death of Gary Cooper (June12).
I am upset that the article failed on every level to present a balanced account of the impact this gentleman had on the community at large.
Your report was astonishingly biased and almost represented Mr Cooper as some kind of urban hero. In fact, he cost the public probably hundreds of thousands of pounds in court time, prison costs, police time and resources and his 'possession' of doorways in the town centre and the bus stop at Cosmeston was to many , mainly older, people very threatening.
His 500 court appearances and 'friendship' with Charles Bronson is presented almost as something to be proud of.
I truly feel sorry for anyone that finds themselves in difficult circumstances. However, I do not believe that those individuals and organisations that 'helped' Mr Cooper by delivering food, drink, duvets, Christmas decorations and the like to his 'place of residence' as he occasionally called it actually helped him at all and served only to prolong his unfortunate circumstances.
Of course Mr Cooper needed help but nothing seemed to have any effect on his way of life.
I would suggest that your story probably conflicts with the feelings of many of your readers who came into contact with Mr Cooper and whilst no one would have wished him any harm many were glad when the doorsteps in the town and the bus stop at Cosmeston were returned to their proper use.
To give over the whole of the front page to this opinionated report of this man who caused trouble to many whilst consigning your report regarding the admirable Tina Selby being awarded her BEM for bringing pleasure to many thousands of our soldiers serving in danger abroad to a few column inches on page 5 is, in my opinion, inexcusable.
Please return to what you do best. Reporting, matter of factly, on what goes on in and around Penarth. Please leave the bias and opinion to the national red tops and the like. We expect much better from yourselves.