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Omaha

Meteorologists Mike LaPoint, Cheryl Lemke Join WOWT

Meteorologists Mike LaPoint and Cheryl Lemke have joined WOWT, the NBC affiliate in Omaha.

LaPoint comes to WOWT from WPXI in Pittsburgh, where worked for five years. He will be WOWT’s chief meteorologist, replacing Jim Flowers, who left the station in December.

Lemke joins WOWT from WSBT in South Bend, where she has worked since 2010. Prior to that, Lemke spent 22 years at The Weather Channel. In her new role at WOWT, she will focus on special projects for the station and its weather-related digital channel.

“We know that the most important coverage for you and your family is tracking, alerting and accurately forecasting local weather where you live to help you plan your day every day,” the station said in announcing the hires.

Meteorologist Jim Flowers Out at WOWT

Meteorologist Jim Flowers will not have his contract renewed when it expires next week.  WOWT, the NBC affiliate for Omaha, NE, announced the move on its facebook page saying,

“WOWT has informed Jim Flowers that it does not intend to enter into a new agreement for his services when his current agreement expires on December 31, 2012. WOWT appreciates Jim’s contributions to WOWT and thanks him for his many years of service.

Flowers’ whereabouts have been the subject of speculation around Omaha and as far South as Lincoln for the last few weeks. On Christmas Eve, the Omaha World-Herald joked,

“WOWT will be tracking Santa’s whereabouts. After WOWT finds Santa, perhaps it can find Jim Flowers.”

Read more

VIDEO: Bat Flies Through KETV Newsroom

The news team at KETV got an early Halloween fright when a wayward bat flew through the newsroom and studio this weekend.

In the video (watch after the jump), employees of the Omaha ABC affiliate try out various implements to wrangle the bat, even calling in the professionals. The bat was eventually subdued with a well-placed box top. Video of the incident inside… Read more

Chase Williams Leaves Dallas for Omaha

Chase Williams takes over as Sports Director at Journal Broadcast Group station KMTV (CBS) Action 3 News in Omaha. Williams joins from KDAF (CW) in Dallas where he was sports anchor. “Our local sports teams are part of the fabric of everyday life in Nebraska, and Chase brings a wealth of experience covering college and professional teams,” says Joe Spadea, KMTV’s news director. After a couple radio stints, Williams landed in Lubbock at KJTV-FOX 34. He joined KDAF a little over a year ago.

KETV’s Adrian Whitsett Returns to Air Following DUI, Asks Viewers for Forgiveness

“I made a mistake, a huge mistake, and it nearly cost me everything,” KETV anchor-reporter Adrian Whitsett said in a recent interview with the station’s senior anchor, Rob McCartney, speaking about his DUI conviction.

After an unpaid leave of absence following his arrest in January, Whitsett returned to work last month and returned to the air this week. The Omaha ABC-affiliate cleared the way for his on-air return by airing a story on Sunday in which Whitsett asks viewers for forgiveness. Read more

WOWT Offers Charity Donation in Morning Team’s Facebook Challenge

WOWT‘s morning team is now locked in a competition for the most Facebook Likes.  Whoever has the most new Likes by Friday, April 27th, will get $100 to donate to the charity of their choice.

Anchors Jim Siedlecki and Serese Cole, reporter Jodi Baker, and meteorologist Rusty Lord are competing for the charitable prize using promo videos, which have been uploaded to YouTube.  Cole, who joined the station last summer, may have the upper hand considering that her video (above) features Nebraska icon Tom Osborne.

Adrian Whitsett Returns to KETV Following DUI

KETV anchor Adrian Whitsett is back at work, after serving time for his third DUI.

KETV general manager Ariel Roblin confirmed today that Whitsett has returned to work, although she said that his return to the air has not yet been determined.

In an email, Whitsett told TVSpy that he hopes to be back on air “within a few weeks.”  Before going on unpaid leave following his arrest, Whitsett anchored KETV’s weekday 5 p.m. newscast.

Whitsett’s Twitter account went dark following his DUI arrest in January but he started tweeting again on Thursday.  “Good to be back at it!” reads one message.

KETV Anchor Sentenced to Jail Time

KETV anchor Adrian Whitsett was sentenced Monday morning to 30 days in jail, following his recent DUI arrest.

The Omaha ABC-affiliate reports that Whitsett pleaded guilty to one count of third-offense misdemeanor DUI.  In addition to 30 days in jail, which can be served as house arrest, Whitsett received two years supervised probation.

Whitsett is currently on a leave of absence from KETV.  He remains an employee of the station.

“I shouldn’t have been doing this. It almost cost me my job,” Whitsett told the judge in the case. “I don’t plan on doing this again.”

After Cutting Grammys Short, KMTV Now Airing Missed Performance During Newscasts

After cutting Sunday night’s Grammy telecast short, Omaha CBS-affiliate KMTV is airing the missed portion of the show during its newscasts today and apologizing to viewers for the mistake.

“Our station made a technical error and mistakenly switched to our local news last night before Paul McCartney‘s performance ended,” KMTV vice president and marketing manager Chris Sehring said in a statement that the station posted on its Facebook page today.  “It was entirely our fault–and I am very sorry that it happened.”

KMTV is airing the final part of McCartney’s performance, which the station downloaded from YouTube, during its noon, 6, and 10 p.m. newscasts today. Read more

Viewers Outraged as KMTV Cuts Grammys Short

Viewers in Omaha were stunned on Sunday night when local CBS-affiliate KMTV cut from a high-octane performance by Paul McCartney, Bruce Springsteen, Dave Grohl, and others, to a weather forecast by John Walsh.

As usually happens with primetime awards shows, Sunday night’s Grammy ceremony ran a few minutes over schedule.  But KMTV decided to run its late local newscast right at 10:30 anyway, abruptly cutting from guitar shredding to the weather outlook for Monday’s commute.

What made the programming shift especially odd was the fact that much of KMTV’s newscast was dedicated to coverage of the Grammys. Read more

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