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Norfolk-Portsmouth-Newport News

Attorney Wants $5 Million from WAVY in Defamation Case

wavy logoThe Virginian-Pilot reports a local attorney is suing WAVY for $5 million.

The attorney, Sterling Weaver, is representing himself in the defamation case against the Portsmouth, VA, NBC affiliate. Weaver claims the station “maligned him” while reporting about his arrest on an assault charge.

In a Feb. 6 newscast, WAVY reported that Weaver had been indicted on felony assault and misdemeanor sexual battery charges for an alleged incident involving a female deputy in a Portsmouth courtroom.

The deputy accused Weaver of inappropriately touching her.

During that report, WAVY also said it “did some digging into Weaver’s past” and discovered that he had been convicted of assault and sentenced to 30 days in jail for grabbing a prosecutor by the throat in 2006, according to the lawsuit.

The station, however, failed to report that Weaver appealed that case to a Circuit Court judge who dismissed it after Weaver remained on good behavior for a year, the suit says. He did not serve jail time in that case. Read more

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Anne McNamara Says Goodbye to WAVY-WVBT

mcnamara wavy croppedAnne McNamara, reporter for WAVY-WVBT is leaving the Portsmouth, VA, NBC and FOX affiliate.

McNamara told viewers goodbye on last night’s WVBT 10:00 p.m. news.

Before coming to WAVY-WVBT in 2011, McNamara worked at WGME in Portland, ME. She started her career at WSYR in Syracuse, NY.

Aubrey Aquino Joins WAVY as ‘The Hampton Roads Show’ Co-Host

aubrey aquinoAubrey Aquino has joined WAVY, the NBC affiliate in Portsmouth, Va., as the co-host of “The Hampton Roads Show.” Aquino co-hosts the interactive lifestyle show alongside Chris Reckling.

“Exciting times are ahead on The Hampton Roads Show with our new co-host Aubrey Aquino,” executive producer Stephanie Cooke said in a statement. “With Aubrey’s unique background as a lifestyle and entertainment correspondent, she will be a terrific fit for the show and I know Hampton Roads will welcome her with open arms.”

Aquino most recently contributed to WSVN, the Fox affiliate in Miami. She has previously worked at stations in San Francisco and Phoenix.

WAVY Traffic Anchor Says She’s Leaving


WAVY traffic anchor Cheryl Tan told morning show viewers she’s leaving the station after 10 years.

Tan, who has also anchored and reported for the Hampton Roads NBC affiliate, said she was going concentrate on a business she’d started.

Before coming to WAVY, Tan worked in Richmond, VA, at WRIC. She started her career at WGXA in Macon, GA.

Bianca Martinez Signs Off From WTKR

bianca martinezOn the heels of the news that Beverly Kidd is returning to WTKR, evening anchor Bianca Martinez announced on Facebook she is leaving the Norfolk CBS affiliate:

I have made the tough but exciting decision to step away from the anchor desk. It is time to focus more on my family. I have received a wonderful opportunity to work for a fantastic company and I’m so excited! First Data is making a huge commitment to the military community I’m so passionate about and I will be working as a Veteran and Military Spouse recruiter… lead by some amazing people.

Martinez anchors the 4, 6 and 11 p.m. newscasts. She will officially sign off Friday, although she says WTKR viewers “will still catch me on the air every now and then with special reports.”

Beverly Kidd Returns to WTKR

bkidd wtkrBeverly Kidd is re-joining Norfolk, VA, CBS affiliate WTKR.

“Beverly is a pro,” said WTKR news director Tina Luque in a statement. “She has built-in fans and she is excited about how NewsChannel 3 Takes Action and Get Results every day.”

Kidd anchored for WTKR in the late 90′s before working as an anchor and reporter for KTVK in Phoenix, AZ. She left KTVK in 2011.

Recently, she was co-host of a 30-minute show called “Angels in the Neighborhood” where she told viewers in a promo “the reason I left the news business was because it was a soul killer.” Watch the video after the jump.

>UPDATE: Kidd told TVSpy, “I don’t regret saying that. It is true. Some of the gut-wrenching stories that we as journalists report are hard on viewers and they can be hard on the heart for journalists as well. To say anything different, would suggest we are robots. It’s impossible not to be affected by the sad stories.”

Read more

Former WTKR Anchor Expected to Get Probation in Fraud Case

bickford_wtkr_croppedJuliet Bickford, the former WTKR anchor who was arrested in January and plead guilty to filing a false tax return, is expected to be sentenced to probation.

Bickford was an anchor for Hampton Roads CBS affiliate WTKR who resigned in January for personal reasons. She later plead guilty to misdemeanor charges of filing a false tax return after being accused of filing $35,000 in false medical and dental deductions in 2011.

Bickford’s former live in boyfriend Theodoris Grontis was part of a three person crew that scammed crime victims and divorcees out of more than a million dollars.

According to The Virginian-Pilot, The US Attorney’s Office has recommended Bickford get probation and serve a minimum of 500 hours of community service.

In those papers, prosecutors say that since her arrest and guilty plea in January, Bickford has cooperated with authorities in their investigation into the fraud scheme, but they’re not sure she has been completely upfront.

Bickford has maintained to the authorities that she had no knowledge of her now ex-boyfriend Theodoros Grontis’ connection to the scheme. Read more

WAVY Named NPPA’s ‘Station of the Year’ Five Years Running


For the fifth year in a row, WAVY in Hampton Roads, VA, has been named the “Medium Market Station of the Year” by the National Press Photographers Association.

WAVY chief photographer and news operations manager Jeff Myers told News Photographer, “It boils down to we try to do the fundamentals and we do them well all the time.”

Myers told TVNewsCheck the NBC affiliate’s photographers study their work to get better, similar to how athletes watch game film.

He attributes the consistent award-winning photography to a team concept between reporters and photographers.

“We try to tell the best story, with good writing, shooting and editing. Good opening and close, with great, clean, natural sound. We strive to be consistently good in everything we do.”

WTKR Cameras Malfunction Before News, Station Tells Viewers ‘Things Are Looking Up’

Norfolk-Hampton Roads CBS affiliate WTKR had some problems with its studio cameras right before its 4:00 p.m show today.

WTKR Reporter Reed Andrews tweeted out a picture of one of the cameras looking skyward.

The station also let viewers know on its facebook page. “Things are looking up at NewsChannel 3 today. No, really. We have a few minutes before the show and all of our cameras in the studio are pointing to the ceiling! Join us at 4 to see us overcome a few technical issues to bring you the news!” Read more

Former WTKR Anchor Allegedly Caught Up In International Scam

bickford_wtkr_croppedAccording to the The Virginian-Pilot, Juliet Bickford, the anchor who recently resigned from Hampton Roads CBS affiliate WTKR, has allegedly been caught up in an international fraud ring.

Bickford, who faces misdemeanor IRS charges, was sharing a home with man named Theodoros “Terry” Grontis.

Grontis, along with Cullen Johnson and Elaine White are accused of  having “bilked crime victims, divorcees and even one lottery winner out of more than $1 million.”

Court records show Bickford’s bank account was allegedly used to launder the cash.

Bickford has not responded to messages from The Pilot. Her lawyers declined to comment and said she would not be commenting either.

No trespassing signs were posted at the foot of her driveway, and in front of her parents’ home next door. [Rick] Garrity [Bickford's neighbor] said the signs went up last week.

[IRS Agent Brian] Pelfrey and other IRS and FBI agents spent more than two years putting the case together against White, Johnson and Grontis.

A federal grand jury here indicted them last April on multiple counts of wire fraud, money laundering and evading taxes. Bickford is identified in the indictment only by her initials. Read more

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