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One of the latest developments in clean-up efforts in the Gulf is a controversial safety zone BP announced last week. The 65 square-foot area effectively blocks reporters and photographers from getting close enough to do their jobs well. Off-duty police officers hired by BP to run security details have also been criticized for harassing journalists trying to cover the story. On our rebroadcast of today's To the Point, although BP now says efforts to stop the spill may pay off in the next few weeks, what’s happening to the flow of information about the disaster? Also, a new DNA test leads to an arrest in the "grim sleeper" case, and the largest US-Russia spy swap since the Cold War. The game is on -- or is it? Guest host Sara Terry sits in for a vacationing Warren Olney.

Banner image: Support ships are seen near where efforts continue to recover oil and cap the Deepwater Horizon spill site on July 3, 2010 in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Louisiana. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Making News New DNA Test Leads to Arrest in the 'Grim Sleeper' Case 11 MIN, 4 SEC

The LA Police Department believes it's broken the case of a serial killer who murdered 11 women in south Los Angeles between 1985 and 2007. On Wednesday, authorities arrested Lonnie David Franklin, Jr, a former LAPD employee. Detectives connected him to the murders using his son's DNA sample, marking the first time a familial DNA test has been used to make a criminal case. Christine Pelisek, crime reporter for the LA Weekly, was the first to report that the infamous "grim sleeper" was still on the loose.

Christine Pelisek, People magazine (@chrispelisek)

Main Topic New Coast Guard Rules Hampering Coverage in the Gulf 33 MIN, 51 SEC

It was a story the news media largely overlooked last week, just before the Fourth of July holiday weekend. The US Coast Guard announced that a 65-square foot "safety zone" would be put in place against unauthorized persons to protect clean-up efforts in the Gulf. Photographers and reporters are among the first critics of the rule, because it bars them from getting close enough to effectively report on the spill. Why did BP put a safety zone in place now? Is it becoming harder for journalists to report on the impact of one of the biggest environmental disasters in US history? Is the government doing enough to protect the public's right to know?

Chris Kirkham, Los Angeles Times (@c_kirkham)
Bob Carey, President, National Press Photographers Association
Jim McPherson, Spokesman, US Coast Guard
Bryan Walsh, Time magazine (@bryanrwalsh)
Monique Harden, Co-director, Advocates for Environmental Human Rights
Gary Bostwick, First Amendment litigator

Reporter's Notebook A Good Old-Fashioned Spy Swap? 8 MIN, 47 SEC

In the biggest US-Russian spy swap since the Cold War, ten alleged spies arrested in the United States last month may on their way to Moscow. Reports are emerging today about a possible swap, involving the ten suspects arrested last month on charges of being part of a Russian espionage ring. Clifford Levy is Moscow Bureau Chief for the New York Times.

Clifford Levy, Moscow Bureau Chief, New York Times

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