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Jacksonville

Garrett Bedenbaugh to Join WTEV-WAWS as Weekend Meteorologist

bedenbaugh_wtevwawsGarrett Bedenbaugh is joining Jacksonville CBS and FOX affiliate WTEV-WAWS as weekend meteorologist.

WTEV-WAWS news director Bob Longo told TVSpy Bedenbaugh will join the station in mid to late May and will start on air, “soon thereafter.”

“Excited to announce that I will be joining #ActionNewsJax in Jacksonville, FL in late May!” Bedenbaugh wrote on his facebook page. “Let’s do this #FLwx! Will be on the weekend evening shows.”

Bedenbaugh comes to WTEV-WAWS from WACH in Columbia, SC.

Unicorn Appears in Jacksonville Reporter’s Live Shot


WTLV-WJXX reporter David Williams either witnessed the first verified appearance of a creature thought only to exist in mythical candyland dreams or he was photobombed a week ago Saturday. TVSpy guesses it was the latter.

Williams was reporting live about a house fire where no one was hurt when he turned around to point out a firefighter on the scene. That’s when the unicorn person ran in to the shot, came up beside him, made some chirping noises, then stumbled off.

The Jacksonville NBC and ABC affiliate reported Williams had been “taunted” by the Unicorn.

Questions Raised Over Jacksonville Sheriff’s Handling of Local Reporter’s Tickets

mitchem_wjxtThe Florida Times-Union is looking into why the Jacksonville County Sheriff voided two tickets and a misdemeanor summons for WJXT reporter Ashley Mitchem.

Mitchem had been ticketed by Officer Jose Marrero for speeding, failure to change her address and a misdemeanor notice to appear for having the emblem of the Fraternal Order of Police on her car after two previous warnings to remove it.

Sheriff John Rutherford recently ordered the tickets and the misdemeanor voided, violating department rules in the process.

Bob Ellis, vice president and general manager for WJXT, told TVSpy, ““Ashley was stopped for alleged traffic violations on more than one occasion in the early morning hours of the day en route to work, always by the same police officer.  She believed she was being put in a potentially uncomfortable situation and as such, called the Sheriff and asked him for advice on how to formally and properly handle the matter.  To suggest there is anything more to this story is irresponsible.”

An official with the Jacksonville Sheriff’s department claimed Marrero was stalking Mitchem and that’s why the tickets were voided. Marrero had pulled Mitchem over twice before and let her off with a warning. Read more

Bob Longo Named News Director for WTEV-WAWS

WTEV-WAWS logo_304x200Cox Media Group has named Bob Longo as news director for its Jacksonville, FL, CBS and FOX affiliates WTEV-WAWS.

“I’m thrilled and honored to join Cox Media Group Jacksonville and CBS47 & FOX30 Action News beginning January 27th,” Longo said in a statement. “I can’t wait to join them and continue the growth and success Action News has enjoyed.”

Longo last worked as a news director at WESH in Orlando. He has also worked as a news director in Pittsburgh, Buffalo, and Binghamton, NY.

He replaces Mike McCormick who left WTEV-WAWS in early December.

Florida Meteorologist Sentenced for DUI

Deegan_DUI_croppedTim Deegan, meteorologist for WTLV-WJXX entered a plea of “no contest” to the charge of driving under the influence.

First Coast News, the branded name of the Jacksonville, FL, NBC and ABC duopoly, reported the meteorologist was sentenced to 12 months probation, had his license suspended for six months and was given 50 hours of community service.

Deegan, who was arrested last month, must also pay court costs and fines totaling $1,031 and attend DUI school.

Mike McCormick Out as WTEV-WAWS ND

action news jacksonvilleNews director Mike McCormick is out at WTEV-WAWS, Cox Media’s CBS and Fox affiliates in Jacksonville, Fla.

“Mike McCormick has left our company,” general manager Jim Zerwekh told TVSpy. “Mike Dreaden, WSB-TV News Director will additionally be overseeing the news operation until which time I name a new ND.”

McCormick has been news director since 2008. Before joining WTEV-WAWS, he worked as news director at WPMI in Mobile, WKYC in Cleveland and WTLV in Jacksonville.

Jacksonville Meteorologist Tim Deegan Arrested For DUI

tim deegan mugshotWJXX-WTLV chief meteorologist Tim Deegan was arrested and charged with DUI Saturday night, according to the Jacksonville duopoly.

The stations report Deegan was arrested by the Jacksonville Beach Police and booked shortly before 10 p.m. Saturday. He was released on his own recognizance Sunday morning.

“As a matter of policy, First Coast News does not comment on matters of a legal or personnel nature involving our employees,” president and general manager Eric S. Land said in a statement.

WJXT Adds An Hour of Morning News


Jacksonville Independent station WJXT is expanding its morning news by an hour at 9:00 a.m. starting Monday.

The station told viewers on its facebook page, “The Morning Show is expanding! Starting Monday, WJXT4 Nikki Kimbleton and WJXT4 Tarik Minor will anchor our new weekday 9 a.m. hour. We have some great segments in store … tune in!”

The anchors also announced the move during this morning’s show and gave each other high fives all around while promising to “keep it real.”

Jacksonville Reporter and Photographer Robbed at Gunpoint

FCN_robbedFirst Coast News reporter Mike Lyons and his photographer were robbed at gunpoint on Thursday evening.

The station said the two were held at gunpoint at around 6:45 p.m. on the Northwest side of Jacksonville. The suspect took their wallets and cellphones. Neither Lyons or his photographer were hurt in the incident.

The Jacksonville, FL, NBC and ABC duopoly reported the station is working with the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office to find the suspect.

Joy Purdy Returns to WJXT

Joy Purdy is returning to Jacksonville’s independent station WJXT.

The station announced Purdy will anchor its 5:30, 6:30 and 11:00 p.m. newscasts.

“We’ve been looking for just the right person to join Mary Baer, Tom Wills and Rob Sweeting in the evenings,” said WJXT vice president and general manager Bob Ellis in a statement. “Joy is like so many of us, trying to find the time to balance all the things important in life between home and work. To have her back with her original TV family at The Local Station and bring that perspective to our viewers who are trying to do the same thing is the perfect match.”

Purdy worked at WJXT from 1995 to 2000 as an anchor and reporter before leaving for Miami’s WFOR. She came back to Jacksonville as anchor for First Coast News. In March, she left the station after being offered the 11:00 p.m. anchor position, saying she wanted to take a short break from TV to spend more time with her family.

[The Florida Times-Union]

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