HART chief claims to be “attacked” by a TV reporter’s questions

Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority (HART) interim CEO Carolyn House Stewart does not like being questioned by reporters. She feels “attacked” by their questions and their reporting.

This past Monday, WTSP 10 Investigates reporter Jenna Bourne approached House Stewart after a HART Operations and Safety.  Bourne wanted to ask questions and solicit comment about bus driver safety after WTSP reported that physical attacks on HART drivers had more than tripled in one year.

According to Bourne’s Twitter post, 10I Investigates had “requested interviews with HART’s interim CEO 5 times since the beginning of January.”

HART CEO Carolyn House Stewart gesturing for security after being “attacked” by a TV reporter.

In response (video here), House Stewart refused to take the reporter’s business card, appeared to call security to her aid, and said “Ms. Bourne, I am not going to be attacked by you.”

House-Stewart is an attorney and should know better.  A reporter asking the highly paid head of a $125 million dollar a year public agency questions is not an “attack” on that public servant.

Asking the HART CEO tough questions and reporting on driver safety in the wake of a stabbing death  of an on-duty HART driver, and the stabbing of another, is not an “attack” on House Stewart.

If House Stewart wants a chance to experience what a real “attack” is like, she should drive one of HART’s buses.

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