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WBFF Apologizes for ‘Kill a Cop’ Story

FoxFacing massive fallout from a story aired Sunday night that claimed peaceful protesters had called for the killing of police officers, Baltimore Fox affiliate WBFF invited a protest leader on air to apologize face-to-face. “We aired a clip from a protest in Washington, DC where we reported protesters were chanting ‘kill a cop’,” said anchor Jeff Barnd. “We received a phone call from Tawanda Jones, who is in the video, who informed us that the chant was actually ‘We won’t stop. We can’t stop. ’til killer cops. Are in cell blocks’.”

Barnd said the mistake was an honest error. “When you do a news story, it usually goes through a lot of desks,” he said. “A lot of brains look at it. And it’s unfortunate that it made it on our air last night.”

Watch the apology, after the jump: Read more

KCEN Meteorologist Says Gunman Never Spoke: ‘He Just Started Shooting At Me’

6280916_GPatrick Crawford says the man who shot him outside the studios of Temple, Texas NBC affiliate KCEN never said a word. “He just started shooting at me as I was leaving the parking lot,” Crawford said in a news conference at the Texas hospital where he’s been recovering since the shooting last Wednesday.

Crawford, a meteorologist at the station, was shot in the stomach and shoulder, and a bullet grazed his head. “Things are improving. I’m slowly getting better,” Crawford said. “It’s been a long process with a lot of pain.”

Watch Crawford’s news conference, after the jump: Read more

WXMI Apologizes for Anchor’s ‘Inappropriate Word’; Viewers Rush to Anchor’s Defense


The Grand Rapids Press reports a Facebook apology by Grand Rapids Fox affiliate WXMI took an unusual turn, with viewers flooding the page with critical comments. “FOX 17′s Facebook page exploded this morning over an apology for an inappropriate word uttered during Sunday evening’s 11 p.m. news.,” wrote Jeffrey Kaczmarczyk.

The Press reports hundreds of people commented on an apology posted by the station’s news director, which vowed to “take corrective action” after the incident, noting the station has a “zero tolerance” policy for profanity on air. But commenters were more concerned with the punishment than the crime:

There were nearly 750 “likes” for the most popular comment so far, posted one hour after Blanton’s apology, by Marc Oppenheimer, of Muskegon:

“Mistakes happen. A simply apology would have sufficed. Advertising that you intend to discipline an employee is extremely unprofessional however. I am more offended you decided to publicize your decision making and intent to discipline than I am by anything you said.”

Chris Smith has drawn more than 300 “likes” for posting, “I will stop watching FOX 17 if she is fired. Everyone makes mistakes.”

The original post was later deleted.

Baltimore Fox Affiliate Faces Protests After ‘Kill a Cop’ Report

WBFFA report Sunday by Baltimore Fox affiliate WBFF has resulted in Gawker describing the station as “slimy”, and activists in Baltimore calling for protests outside the station’s studios tonight.

The story, by reporter Melinda Roeder, was part of team coverage on the murders of two New York City police officers. “Given this anti-police officer sentiment that has spread across the country,” Roeder said, the danger for police “is growing.”

Roeder then cited protests and anger following the deaths of Eric Garner and Michael Brown, especially, Roeder said, “in minority communities.” Roeder aired a portion of a YouTube clip from a Washington protest march, suggesting that protesters had chanted “kill a cop.”

The protesters say in fact, they were chanting nothing of the sort. The group Baltimore Bloc says the chant “is well-known to local activists…we won’t stop/we can’t stop/’til killer cops/are in cell blocks:’”
Read more

On the Move, 12/22/14

Dionne Miller becomes the first female sports anchor at ABC O&O WLS from sports anchor/reporter at FOX O&O WFLD in Chicago.

Chelsea Gates joins as the Social Media Reporter & Co-Host of 120 Morning Run.

Kaley O’Kelley becomes the 5, 6 & 10pm Anchor at CBS O&O KTVT in Dallas from morning anchor at KTVK in Phoenix.

Allyson Rae joins WUSA9 in Washington, DC as Meteorologist from WZVN-WBBH in Fort Myers, FL.

Kimberly Gill moves to WDIV-TV in Detroit as Anchor/Reporter from KDKA in Pittsburgh.

Johnny Kane joins FOX Sports Detroit as Host/Reporter from sports anchor at KMBC in Kansas City

Mike Berman becomes the Main Sports Anchor at WTTV, CBS4 in Indianapolis from YNN in Austin.

Marianne Lyles becomes the Morning and Noon Anchor at WTTV, CBS4 in Indianapolis from WISN in Milwaukee.

Lindsay Riley becomes the Morning and Noon Meteorologist at WTTV, CBS4 in Indianapolis from weekend weather at KXAS in Dallas.

Kara Sewell moves to WXIX-TV in Cincinnati as Anchor of “Fox 19 Morning News” from KWCH in Wichita.

Miller, Gates, O’Kelley, Rae, Gill, Kane, Berman, Lyles, Riley and Sewell are all represented by Matthew Kingsley – President & CEO of 3 Kings Entertainment, LLC


WTIC Stuns Host by Pulling Plug on Political Show, ‘The Capitol Report:’ ‘I Had No Idea’


WTIC, the Fox affiliate in Hartford, has canceled its Emmy-nominated political program, “Capitol Report.” The Hartford Courant, a partner in the show with WTIC, reports host Tom Dudchik and staff were told last Friday that Sunday morning’s show would be the last. “I had no idea, I had no inkling,” said Dudchik.

According to the Courant, WTIC news director Coleen Marren made the announcement after the show’s final taping Friday. “I was surprised.” Dudchik said. “I guess the station is going in a different direction.”

Reward Doubled in Search for Gunman Who Shot KCEN Meteorologist

crawford KCEN croppedAuthorities in Texas have doubled the reward–to $10,000–in the shooting of Patrick Crawford, meteorologist at Temple, Texas NBC affiliate KCEN.

Crawford was shot last Wednesday outside the station, and survived. A witness tells ABC News Crawford screamed for help. “He said ‘I’ve been shot. I’ve been shot. I’m in terrible pain. Help me please,’” Richard Dieter told ABC. “[I] went and got some paper towels out of my truck and we held those on his wounds and five to six minutes later, the state trooper showed up,” Deiter said.

TV Music Maker Helps Give Kids Gift of Music

If you’ve worked creative services at any local station, chances are you’ve used some cuts from Stephen Arnold Music.

Arnold, along with some other musicians in Dallas made an album called “The Six Strings of Christmas” to help put instruments in the hands of kids who can’t afford them.

“There are many statistics that show that the kids that are involved in music have 52% better chance of going to college,” Stephen Arnold, of Stephen Arnold Music, said.

For every album sold, 100 percent of the proceeds go to “Little Kids Rock” It’s an organization “dedicated to ensuring that every student has the opportunity to unlock his or her inner music-maker.”

From the website:

Little Kids Rock trains public school teachers and donates all of the instruments, curricular resources and support they need to ensure that their kids receive the right to rock! What makes Little Kids Rock different is that they do more than just donate instruments like guitars, drums and keyboards; they build lasting music programs that focus on teaching kids to perform, improvise and compose the popular music genres that they already know and love, like rock, pop, blues, hip-hop, country, reggae and R&B.

Marsha Bonhart Leaving WDTN

marsha-bonhart320Marsha Bonhart is leaving Dayton NBC affiliate WDTN after nearly 35 years in local TV news.

The Dayton Daily News says Bonhart’s last newscast will be Tuesday.

WDTN is transiting from LIN Media to Media General, which announced it would buy the station last March.

Bonhart learned her contract would not be renewed on Dec. 11.

“The station has been very gracious to me about the whole thing,” Bonhart said. “When you get into this industry, you always know this is a possibility.”

She stared at WDTN in March 1988 after working at a Dayton hospital as media coordinator. Bonhart has also worked at KTTV in Los Angeles, WKEF in Dayton, and WDHO in Toledo.

Meredith Completes WALA Buy

WALA LogoMeredith Corporation says it has completed its $86 million acquisition of Mobile, Ala. FOX affiliate WALA.

WALA was one of the ten stations involved in the station group scramble in August that saw five station groups swapping properties to comply with FCC ownership regulations. Meredith bought WALA from LIN Broadcasting which was still in the throes of merging with Media General.

The station group said it operates 17 TV stations that reach over 10 percent of US TV households and has seven stations in the top 25 markets.