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Posts Tagged ‘KHOU’

Woman Sues KHOU After Report Claims She Locked Her Kids in Hot Car

khou kids car reportA Texas mother is suing Houston CBS affiliate KHOU after a report that falsely accused her of leaving her children in a hot car while she went to get a hair cut, the Houston Chronicle reports.

KHOU reported on the incident July 15 based on a witness who said shoppers “took matters into their own hands,” smashing the car window with a hammer while their mother, Araceli Cisneros, was inside the mall. In reality, Cisneros had actually accidentally locked the children — and her car keys — in the car, and had asked for help in smashing the windows to get them.

After the story went viral, Cisneros filed a suit claiming more than $200,000 in damages, the Chronicle reports:

The suit says KHOU and reporter Rucks Russell published the story with a “reckless disregard for its truth or falsity” and without doing the “most basic fact checking.” According to the suit, nationally syndicated TV personality Nancy Grace even picked it up, calling Cisneros an unfit mother. Read more

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Courtney Zubowski Will Sign Off From KHOU

courtney zubowskiCourtney Zubowski is leaving Houston CBS affiliate KHOU, Houston media blogger Mike McGuff reports.

“We’ve loved having her in our newsroom and on our air—Courtney’s a game changer. Very sorry to lose her day to day, and she knows this. But Courtney also knows she has all our support and best wishes for whatever comes next,” KHOU executive news director Philip Bruce wrote in a note to staff.

Zubowski tells McGuff she will “pursue new and exciting opportunities” after she signs off later this month.

Katherine Whaley Leaving KHOU

katherine whaleyAs Darby Douglas returns to KHOU as morning traffic reporter, Katherine Whaley — who has been in that role since 2009 — is leaving the Houston CBS affiliate. The Houston Chronicle has details:

Whaley, a graduate of Memorial High School and Rice University who joined Channel 11 in 2009, said she was offered a reporting position with the station that she said she “ultimately determined was not the right fit for me.”

She said she will continue with Channel 11 through most of August and is “engaged in conversations for upcoming opportunities.”

Houston media blogger Mike McGuff, who first reported the story, also talks to Whaley about what’s next.

Former KHOU Reporter Brad Woodard Dies

Former KHOU reporter Brad Woodard was found dead in his Houston home last week.

According to KHOU, authorities found his body Wednesday morning. He hadn’t returned several phone calls from relatives prompting them to ask police to check on him. No foul play was suspected.

He worked at Minneapolis NBC affiliate KARE from 1990 until 2006, before leaving for Houston CBS affiliate KHOU. Both stations remembered Woodard for being an “old school” journalist and award-winning writer.

We’ll forever remember Brad as a kind man with a soft heart.  He had two great passions—storytelling and animals.  Frequently, Brad turned a light on those who abused or neglected innocent creatures and his work on animal abuse—and many other topics—won him multiple local, regional and national honors.   One standout series was his investigative look exposing cruelty to animals used in research to produce pharmaceuticals.   He won a highly-coveted Sigma Delta Chi Award for his feature on the death of the family farm.  And he received the National Epilepsy Foundation Distinguished Journalism Award for his work providing an unprecedented glimpse into the life of a teenage boy living with epilepsy. Read more

Lauren Talarico Joins KHOU From WLTX

lauren talaricoLauren Talarico is joining Houston CBS affiliate KHOU as a multimedia journalist, Houston media blogger Mike McGuff reports. Talarico joins KHOU from WLTX, the CBS affiliate in Columbia, S.C.

“Although I am really going to miss my current station WLTX in Columbia, SC, I am thrilled to be staying with Gannett and joining KHOU,” Talarico told McGuff. “I know that with this company I am able to tell good stories about good people who don’t always get the recognition that they should.”

Talarico started at WLTX as a producer and assignment editor in 2008. In her six years at the station, she worked her way up to morning anchor.

Darby Douglas to Return to Houston’s KHOU

douglas khouDarby Douglas will make his return to KHOU as morning traffic reporter in early July.

Douglas last worked at the Houston CBS affiliate from 1996 until 2009. Most recently, he was the assistant director of operations in Houston for Total Traffic Network. He can also be heard on any one of Houston’s nine Clear Channel radio stations.

“Darby’s a storyteller. He loves weaving a personal yarn or two as he shares his wisdom on how to beat the latest freeway mess,” KHOU executive news director Phil Bruce said in a statement. “We’re looking forward to having him back in the KHOU Family.”

Houston Photojournalist Rolling When Driver Careens Through Crowd


KHOU photojournalist Scott Stevens was rolling when a Houston man drove his car through a crowd of people.

According to the Houston CBS affiliate’s video (above), the driver is the father of a man who was accused of killing and wounding two men earlier in the day. Neighbors blame that shooting on escalating tension in the neighborhood.

“Why would I be in the car and let him do that,” asked passenger Deshonna Smith, who is the fiancée of the driver. “They came out here picking on him. This was self defense.”

The video shows a bike being hurled at the car moments before it careened toward a sea of people.

Smith claims the victim’s family was taunting her man, and one thing led to another.

“That’s when he got upset. The man threw the bicycle. Another man came and punched him in his face. That’s when you seen the car go up in the median,” said Smith. “The devil has taken over this whole apartment complex. This ain’t nothing but Satan’s playground.” Read more

Alice Barr Joins KHOU From KCTV

alice barrAfter two years at KCTV in Kansas City, Alice Barr is joining KHOU in Houston, Mike McGuff reports.

“I can’t wait to get started at KHOU,” Barr told McGuff. “I’m thrilled to be joining a team of journalists with a reputation for uncovering the big stories and telling them well. I’m also looking forward to exploring Houston and the Lone Star State. I’ll be taking recommendations for any hidden treasures to visit, as well as story ideas. I know there is so much happening in the news, and in the city, in Houston and I’m excited to dive in.”

Barr was a reporter at KCTV, the CBS affiliate in Kansas City. Before that, she worked at KGAN-KFXA in Cedar Rapids and WIFR in Rockford, Ill.

How Houston Stations Covered the KTRK Shooting

Houston stations covered breaking news about a rival newsroom this morning as a woman was arrested for firing several shots at KTRK‘s studio and parking lot around 9 a.m.

KPRC broke into the 9 a.m. hour of the “Today” show with a brief report of the news anchored by Owen Conflenti and Rachel McNeill. “We want to tell you first and foremost that everyone is okay from when we called over there to our friends at KTRK to check on what’s going on,” McNeill said. The station had Ryan Korsgard reporting from the scene for the 11 a.m. newscast.

Fox owned KRIV reported the news during the station’s regular 9 a.m. newscast, anchored by Tom Zizka and Melissa Wilson. “Gunfire at our colleague station just down the street along Bissonnet and Buffalo Speedway, KTRK,” Zizka reported. KRIV had Hilary Whittier reporting from the scene for the station’s noon newscast.

CBS affiliate KHOU led its noon newscast with Andrew Horansky at the scene. “We are happy to report that none of our friends or colleagues here at Channel 13 were injured this morning,” Horansky said. “Police are telling us they do not expect to be making any more arrests in this case.”

KHOU Looks Back at News Helicopter Crashes in Houston


Houston CBS affiliate KHOU is using the fatal crash of the KOMO news helicopter in Seattle to remind viewers of similar accidents in the Houston market.

Houston has had its own deadly history of news helicopter crashes. In 2008, a pilot and photographer were killed when KTRK’s chopper crashed in a wooded area of Montgomery County.it was caused by mechanical failure.

In 2000, weather contributed to the crash of FOX 26’s helicopter crash in River oaks, killing the pilot.

In 2001, KHOU’s Air 11 broke apart after hydraulic problems forced a hard landing on top of KHOU’s Studios. There were no serious injuries.

Bob Spradlin, former pilot for the station’s “Air 11,” told the station the challenge for news pilots is to stay focused, “You may have five people trying to tell you what to do at the same time,” said Spradlin. “So it’s a little rough at times trying to sort out the messages.”

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