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Minneapolis-St. Paul

Bus Goes Out of Control, Crashes into WCCO

A Minneapolis Metro Transit bus driver died Friday after his bus went out of control and at one point took out part of CBS owned station WCCO‘s building.

The station said the bus driver “suffered a sudden collapse while driving due to natural causes.”

WCCO Meteorologist Mike Augustyniak was walking down the mall and narrowly missed being hit.

“You do a quick calculation: Do I run away or sneak by it? Because it was moving so slowly, I decided to run toward it and around it, but had to jump over some debris that was being pushed towards me,” Augustyniak said. “The streets were empty because it’s a holiday, so I would say, all and all, lucky no pedestrians were hurt.”

A bicyclist near Augustyniak was sideswiped. He suffered some scrapes, and received medical attention at the scene.

The bus came to a stop next to Peavey Plaza on the corner of 12th Street and Nicollet Mall. Gasoline was seen spewing from the back of the bus, leaving a trail across Nicollet.

Steve Patterson Named ‘Twin Cities Live’ Co-Host

Steve Patterson will begin as co-host of “Twin Cities Live,” KSTP‘s local lifestyle show, on July 21.Paterson will co-anchor alongside Elizabeth Ries. He replaces Chris Egert, who was moved to KSTP’s morning anchor desk earlier this year.

Joe Johnston Named Director of Public Affairs at KSTP-KSTC

kstp5logoJoe Johnston has been named director of public affairs for KSTP-KSTC, Hubbard Broadcasting’s duopoly in Minneapolis-St. Paul. In his new role, Johnston will oversee public affairs, community and media relations, and strategic partnerships for the stations.

“I welcome the opportunity to represent both of these great television stations in our market, to expand existing station partnerships, and explore the many great opportunities 5 Eyewitness News and 45TV can bring to the community,” Johnston said in a statement.

Johnston joined KSTP as sales and marketing manager in 2003 and was promoted director of marketing in 2005.

Longtime WCCO Promotions Executive Dies

wcco_croppedThe Minneapolis Star-Tribune looks at the legacy of Daniel T. “Tom” Cousins, a longtime WCCO promotions executive who died last month. Cousins, who spent 38 years at the CBS-owned station in Minneapolis, was the original architect of the station’s live studio broadcasts from the State Fair:

It was Cousins’ idea in 1968 to build a fully functioning, climate-controlled television studio that would be used only during the 12-day fair. WCCO has been broadcasting live from the State Fair ever since.

Nancy Nelson, who worked as WCCO’s “Saturday Night Weather Girl” for part of her long broadcasting career, said that Cousins recognized the importance of the State Fair, how it related to public relations and how it gave the station the ability to interact with its audience.

“This is the only time that people who view all of our ’CCO on-air folks regularly got to meet them,” Nelson said. “To this day it is an extraordinary presence for WCCO.”

KARE Morning Anchor Leaving TV for Media Relations Job

mcniff kareMorning news anchor Tim McNiff is leaving Minneapolis-St. Paul NBC affiliate KARE.

The station said McNiff will be executive director of media relations for a Minnetonka-based communications company. His last day will be in late August.

McNiff first started at KARE in 1986 as an intern. He was hired as a sports producer in 1993 before working as a sports anchor. He started anchoring KARE11 Sunrise in 2004.

KARE Weekend Meteorologist Leaving Station

sebesta KAREKARE weekend meteorologist Jerrid Sebesta is leaving the Minneapolis NBC affiliate next month to be closer to his family in Sioux Falls, SD.

Sebesta told the Pioneer Press, “This has nothing to do with KARE. I’m leaving on my own terms. I’ve got the best job in the world, but it’s not enough to keep me from going back to be near my family.”

Sebesta started his career at KDLT in Sioux Falls and had a stop at KPNX in Phoenix before coming to KARE in January 2010.

He told the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, “It’s just an unbelievable feeling to walk away voluntarily at the peak of my career into something that is best for our family.”

Man Sues Second Minneapolis Station for Defamation

kstp5logoA Minnesota man has filed a defamation suit against KSTP for wrongly identifying him as a cop killer.

Ryan Larson is suing the Minneapolis ABC affiliate for a story that aired in November saying he had been charged with the  murder of Cold Spring police officer Thomas Decker. Larson had been arrested for the murder, but was later released. Larson sued WCCO earlier this month for the same reason.

“The police arrested and jailed a man and charged him, and we reported that,” KSTP attorney Joseph Roby told the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

According to the suit filed last week: The station broadcast a color picture of Larson’s mug shot several times during the 5 p.m. newscast that also featured an emotional interview with Decker’s mother. KSTP reporters Joe Mazan and Todd Wilson said Larson was charged in the crime when he was being held and investigated.

The phrases, “Officer Killed,” “Murder Suspect” and “Officer Ambushed,” used in TV graphics connected Larson to the killing, his suit said.

“The innuendo of an ambush murder by plaintiff Larson broadcast by defendant KSTP was false and unsupported by evidence connecting plaintiff Larson and was intended to sensationalize the broadcast and was defamatory,” the suit said.

“He’s still feeling the effects of it,” Stephen Fiebiger, Larson’s attorney said. “I think he’s looking certainly for some compensation, and to try to restore his name as best as possible.”

You can read the entire story by clicking here.

Aristea Brady Joins KDVR From WCCO

brady_wcco_304Aristea Brady is joining KDVR, the Fox affiliate in Denver, as co-anchor of the 10 p.m. newscast. She comes from WCCO, the CBS-owned station in Minneapolis, where she has been a reporter and anchor for three years.

“She is a familiar face to many of you and to the Denver audience, having worked as a reporter and weekend morning anchor at KUSA several years ago before leaving for Minnesota,” KDVR news director Ed Kosowski wrote in a note to station staff last week. “Aristea is a Colorado native who was born and raised in Englewood. She has a large extended family in Craig on the Western Slope, where they operate a ranch and where she spent summers herding cattle and sheep before pursuing her career in journalism.”

Brady will anchor the 10 p.m. newscast alongside Boris Sanchez. She will also report during the week.

Kosowski’s full note is after the jump. Read more

WCCO Weekend Anchor Goes Part-Time to ‘Reconnect’ with His ‘Real Life’

moddy wccoWCCO reporter and weekend anchor Edward Moody has cut back on his hours at the Minneapolis CBS owned station so he can reconnect with his family.

According to the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Moody “asked to go part time, so I could reconnect with my REAL life. I’d been hopping around the country for about a decade, and maybe two years ago I realized I’d basically missed 10 years of the lives of the people I love, chasing this dream. So now I’m using the extra time to be with my partner Up North and see my mom, aunt and grandmother more.”

Moody told the Star-Tribune, “I didn’t want to totally step away from my career, but I needed to pull back. Some people can balance a demanding career and personal life, but I wasn’t doing it so well.”

Moody started at WCCO in 2012.

Minnesota Man Sues WCCO For Defamation

wcco setA Minnesota man has filed a defamation lawsuit against WCCO, the CBS-owned station in Minneapolis, for a series of reports identifying him as the killer of a police officer.

Although Ryan Larson was arrested and jailed for five days in connection with the officer’s death, he was never charged. Another man who was a person of interest in the case later died by suicide, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune:

Larson, who now lives in Long Prairie, contends two tweets by a radio reporter and separate news reports wrongfully pointed to him as the cop’s killer and said he was expected to be charged.

According to the lawsuit, reporter Chris Simon tweeted on Nov. 30: “Chief Phil Jones of Cold Spring PD salutes slain officer Tom Decker Shot by welfare suspect Ryan Larson.” A second tweet stated: “The BCAs Drew Evans confirms officer Decker was ‘ambushed’ when shot twice and killed by Ryan Larson.” Read more

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