Had this actually happened, we’d have a case of someone taking the law into his own hands, so to speak. See the third paragraph:
This is not precisely the way the Associated Press sent out this February 2008 wire story. Subsequently, one staffer at San Diego’s North County Times was sacked, another suspended, and the editor performed a public act of contrition:
After conducting an internal investigation, I believe that our editors were not being malicious, furthering some political agenda, or expressing ill will toward Cardenas or anyone else. Instead, I have concluded that our mistake flowed from a deeply misguided joke that made its way into print.
By sheerest coincidence, massive layoffs at the Times began in 2008, culminating with the paper’s absorption by U-T San Diego in 2012.
(Via Miss Cellania.)