Corrections or additions?

This article was prepared for the March 3, 2004

issue of U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.

Between the Lines

You may have read the murder story on the cover of February 29’s New

Jersey section of the New York Times. That usually sanguine section

profiled Jonathan Nyce, the former biotech CEO who is accused of

murdering his wife, and included an anecdote printed in this newspaper

five years ago. Like the Trentonian reporter who used this same quote

plus other information from the U.S. 1 article, Times writer Jonathan

Miller attributed the quote appropriately to U.S. 1.

On March 17, 1999, when we did a cover story on as CEO and founder of

Epigenesis, we printed the advice that Nyce says his father gave.

Miller related U.S. 1’s anecdote about his father: "He worked around

the clock one night to design the machinery to knit the first pair of

pantyhose. But because he had a new family, he was unable to

capitalize on that discovery, whereas his partner was able to run with

it. He told me that if I were ever in a similar position, to be sure I

could capitalize on it."

At the time Nyce told that story, he had dreams of making his company

a big success. Last year, in difficult financial times, Nyce lost

control of his company. Instead of working on Nyce’s projects, new

investors licensed products that were more ready to enter the

marketplace, and Nyce found himself with no job. So of course the

story Nyce told seems ironic now.

Why, you may ask, isn’t U.S. 1 Newspaper doing a cover story on the

alleged murderer? Why aren’t we doing regular, breathless updates on

each and every development in a case that hasn’t even gone to the

grand jury yet?

Because we are a weekly paper. Michelle Nyce died Friday, January 16,

and the following Wednesday, January 21, we did the story. We recapped

what we knew about Nyce from before, what has happened to his company

since then, what the police were saying at the time, and we

reinterviewed our sources. Weekly newspaper deadlines don’t always

lend themselves to play-by-play stories.

That doesn’t mean we won’t ever write about the Nyce case again. When

we think we can add useful insights to a story, we will re-interview

our sources and dig into it. That happened in the Lyle and Erik

Menendez murder case, which attracted raging headlines in both the

tabloid and the mainstream press.

We gave it limited coverage until September 15, 1993, when we

published Larry Tabak’s 4,500 word cover story "When Winning Is

Everything." That issue has been one of the most requested "back

issues" in our nearly 20-year history.

The difference in the Menendez case – Tabak, who is not only an

accomplished writer but also an excellent tennis player who had been

hired by Jose Menendez to play in practice sessions with his sons.

Jonathan Nyce’s story of shattered dreams and allegedly violent crime

will continue to fascinate both the business and popular press. Down

the road, we may revisit the Nyce story. If you have information or an

opinion about it, let us know. In the meantime, read the dailies.

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