Jon Stewart ripped CNN for reporting an arrest in the Boston Marathon bombings and then backtracking from it, saying it had turned into "the human centipede of news."
Fox News and the Boston Globe also reported an arrest Wednesday, and like CNN backed down after the FBI and Boston prosecutors denied it. But CNN was first, and on Wednesday's "Daily Show" Stewart mercilessly tore into "the most trusted name in news."
Stewart said that by reporting the arrest, and then questioning the accuracy of its own "exclusive," the network had "s— in its own mouth" like the monstrous creation in the horror film "Human Centipede."
He also mocked CNN's John King for vaguely reporting that the suspect was believed to be "a dark-skinnned male."
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CNN has defended its coverage, saying it reported the best information it had as it came in Wednesday. it said in a statement to TheWrap that it had "three credible sources on both local and federal levels" when it initially reported an arrest.
"Based on this information we reported our findings," a network representative said. "As soon as our sources came to us with new information, we adjusted our reporting."
King first reported the supposed arrest, and was followed by Fox News and the Boston Globe. The Associated Press said a suspect was in custody and an arrest was imminent.
But the FBI responded to those reports by saying no arrest had been made, and urged the news media to "exercise caution and attempt to verify information through appropriate official channels before reporting."
Stewart played footage of Wolf Blitzer repeatedly noting King's "exclusive" in the time between King's first report and the news of the official denial.
"Oh, it's exclusive because it was completely f—ing wrong," said Stewart.
Stewart also played a clip of King after his initial report of an arrest, in which he quoted a law enforcement sources saying people talking about an "arrest" were "ahead of themselves."
Stewart pretended to whisper to King: "I think they're talking about you."
"John King exclusively reports an arrest has been made, and then caps it an hour later with the news that the FBI would prefer him to enjoy a hot cup of shut the f— up," Stewart said.
On Wednesday's "Colbert Report," Stephen Colbert also weighed in on the conflicting information, saying there was "a major breakthrough in the reporting of all the other things we don't know."