article A controversial Montana newspaper has apologized for a fabricated article alleging that the state is experiencing a spike in drug overdoses.
The article in the Missoulian, a conservative publication, falsely claimed that a statewide survey found that the number of overdose deaths was more than 10 times higher than the state’s official estimate.
The paper said the study had been retracted.
“We are sincerely sorry for the harm that this article has caused,” the article, which ran on Monday, read.
The newspaper also retracted an editorial that claimed that the newspaper had misrepresented a study on coronavirus, which the newspaper said had been published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and published in the American Journal of Public Health.
The Montana State Police said the newspaper published the article without proper information, including the source of the information.
“The article, and the fact that the article has been retracted, are false,” the state police said in a statement.
“Missoulian editors have removed the article and will continue to take steps to improve the accuracy of our reporting.”
The Associated Press has reached out to the Missourian for comment.
The Associated News has reached a resolution with the Missouri Department of Public Safety.
Montana Attorney General Matt Steele said the Montana state police had apologized to the newspaper for the error.
“They were absolutely shocked to see this article in their office,” Steele said.
The AP contacted the Missourite and its publisher, Michael Luscher, and were told by a spokesperson that the company would not be able to comment on the matter.
The Missoulians editorial board said in the article that it was “troubled” that the media and politicians had been duped.
The story was not published in an official paper, the newspaper wrote.
“It was not our intention to mislead anyone,” the editorial board wrote.
The state police told the AP that the paper had corrected the story and would no longer run it.