Ripple Effects Of Others Impacted By Petrino, Dorrell Crash Just Now Coming Into View

by Chris Bahn  on Saturday, Apr. 7, 2012 8:29 am  

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Most of the key figures in the Bobby Petrino-Jessica Dorrell motorcycle accident are well known.

There’s Petrino, the highest paid state employee in Arkansas. There’s Dorrell, a 25-year-old former volleyball player who recently joined the Razorback football staff.

Arkansas Athletic Director Jeff Long, Petrino's boss, has been visible since Thursday when he announced Petrino lied to him about who else was involved in the crash. Arkansas sent a release on behalf of Petrino saying no one else was invovled.


But there are numerous other people involved in the ripple effects of this thing.  

Using its considerable resources — EIGHT people devoted to one story — the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette offers some details of the post-crash scene in today’s 1A report. It’s possible that those details only appeal to a news junkie like me that has been in the reporting business 15-plus years.

(Sidenote: when a paper like the ADG starts putting eight people on a single story, there’s the potential for some real unearthing to happen.And by the way: The New York Times is now in on the story and has a man on the ground in Fayetteville. National blogger SportsByBrooks is now tweeting about the Petrino-Dorrell wreck. How long until he unearths something?)

Here are a couple things that caught my eye in today's pay wall-protected ADG story:

*A state trooper that was dispatched to the accident scene was scheduled to do a fugitive pickup. He dropped that to go to an accident scene that we now know included a wrecked motorcycle, but not the people who wrecked.

Let me type that again: A fugitive being held in a local jail was supposed to be picked up by a state trooper. He dropped that, arranged for somebody else to handle it later, so he could go work the accident. 

*Initially, the couple that transported Petrino and Dorrell from the scene — to a rendezvous point with State Police Capt. Lance King — told reporters that Petrino was alone. Only after seeing the accident report did they admit Dorrell was in the car. Family members are now acting as spokespeople for the couple, who seem to have gone into hiding.

This is reporting minutia for a lot of folks, probably.

What the ADG does is begin to show some of the far-reaching impacts of this story. It’s not just Petrino, Dorrell, Long and the major players who are having their lives turned upside down because the coach decided to take a joyride with his fit, blond, 5-foot-11 “student athlete development coordinator for football.”



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