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Posts Tagged ‘KMOV’

Larry Conners Files Age Discrimination Suit Against KMOV

Larry Conners has made good on his threat to pursue legal action against Belo Corp. and St. Louis CBS affiliate KMOV. In documents obtained by TVSpy, Conners has filed an age discrimination complaint with the Missouri Commission on Human Rights and EEOC.

In the complaint, Conners alleges the station retaliated against him after a dispute over his salary resulted in arbitration last year:

Beginning in December 2010, I have complained to KMOV management about the disparity in pay between me and my previous co-prime anchor, Vickie Newton, an African-American female; I claimed that I received less compensation than Newton because of my race and gender. Ultimately, my complaints resulted in arbitration against KMOV and Belo. Since that arbitration concluded in April 2012, I have been treated differently by KMOV.

Conners says general manager Mark Pimentel and news director Sean McLaughlin removed him from all but one of the evening newscasts, effectively demoting him from his position of primary anchor. He also alleges “other news staff with less news experience was sent out into the field to cover major breaking news stories.” Conners says he was given a two-year contract while other, younger staffers received three-year contracts.

Conners also says KMOV’s response to his claims that the IRS targeted him after a tense interview with President Obama was a result of the salary dispute: Read more

Larry Conners: KMOV ‘Forced Me’ to Read a ‘Misleading Statement’

Former KMOV anchor Larry Conners is doubling down on his claim that the IRS targeted him after a tense interview with President Obama. In a statement this morning, Conners said he can “finally speak in response to the allegations labeling me a ‘tax cheat’, ‘tax fraud’ … because of a misleading statement the [sic] KMOV forced me to read.”

Conners said KMOV “dictated” a statement for him to read on the air “which sounded as if I withheld information to infer a connection between President Obama and the IRS action, and which I was not allowed to amend or explain.” Conners said a “gag order” from the station prevented him from sharing more details:

Here is the clear timeline: I was on an IRS payment plan since August 2011 and made all payments on time. The Obama interview (which went viral) was in April 2012. Between that interview and September 2012, I was informed that the IRS was cancelling my payment plan. I hired a tax attorney and we started working on ways to continue the plan, but could not and still cannot get any resolution. These are facts and not accusations.

TVSpy has reached out to KMOV general manager Mark Pimentel for comment.

Read Conners’ full statement, released through his attorney, after the jump. Read more

After Getting Fired From KMOV, Larry Conners Gives First TV Interview to Rival KTVI

Larry Conners is speaking out about getting fired from St. Louis CBS affiliate KMOV on a rival station.

Conners, who is planning on exploring legal action against KMOV, sat down with KTVI anchor Charles Jaco in an interview that will air on the St. Louis Fox affiliate Sunday (preview above).

“I wouldn’t have even brought the subject up if there had not been the so-called rogue agents story going on. Because remember, I had been through this for months. I never said anything up to that point. It was only based on the news story breaking and I thought, I’m seeing all these cases come up, and they supposedly were going after different groups and individuals. I raised it and put it out to the forum to start conversation,” Conners said.

Fired Anchor Larry Conners Explores Legal Action Against KMOV

An attorney for former KMOV anchor Larry Conners has notified the St. Louis CBS affiliate that “legal action relating to the termination of Mr. Conners’ employment” is possible.

In a letter sent to KMOV general manager Mark Pimentel Thursday, an attorney for Conners requested the station “carefully preserve and not destroy any and all papers, records and documents relating to Mr. Conners’ employment and termination.”

The letter included a list of seven items to be saved, including Conners’ personnel file and communications between Pimentel and Belo Corp. about Conners. Merle Silverstein, the attorney, says the items “could be relevant to a possible legal action.”

Conners was fired from KMOV for claiming the IRS was targeting him after a tense interview with President Obama. Conners later admitted that his issues with the IRS began before the 2012 interview.

View the full letter from Conners’ attorney after the jump. Read more

St. Louis Anchor Who Claimed to be IRS Target Out at KMOV

Saying “there is no higher cause than unbiased, objective news reporting,” St. Louis CBS affiliate KMOV has announced in a statement it has parted ways with anchor Larry Conners.

“We regret to announce that Larry Conners is no longer a KMOV news reporter,” said the statement from KMOV vice president and general manager Mark Pimentel. “Larry was a valued member of KMOV for a long time, and we will miss him.”

Conners was pulled off air last week after posting on facebook that the IRS had targeted him because of a tense interview he did with the President. He later backed off the allegations in an on-air statement telling viewers, “… to be fair, I should disclose that my issues with the IRS preceded that interview by several years.”

Conners facebook page has been taken down. You can read the KMOV statement after the jump. Read more

KMOV’s Larry Conners Off Air After IRS Allegations

Larry Conners,the KMOV anchor who said on facebook the IRS targeted him after an interview with President Obama last year, is off the air until further notice.

“He’s not suspended. We just all thought it made sense (for him) to take a few days off,” Sean McLaughlin, news director for the St. Louis CBS affiliate, told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “We take this very seriously, and we don’t expect this to drag on. We’re still looking into the situation and weighing our options.”

>UPDATE: Conners’ attorney told TVSpy in a statement, “As the attorney for Larry Conners, I am constrained to advise you that he is barred by corporate from making statements, posting on Facebook, or participating in interviews on the IRS issue. That is the only reason for his silence.” Read more

KMOV’s Larry Conners: IRS Issues Began Before 2012 Interview With President Obama

KMOV anchor Larry Conners, who claimed he was targeted by the IRS after he pressed President Obama on government spending during a 2012 interview, walked back his allegation on the St. Louis CBS affiliate’s 5 p.m. newscast Tuesday.

“First, I need to state those were my personal views, not those of KMOV-TV,” Conners said (video above). “Second, to be fair, I should disclose that my issues with the IRS preceded that interview by several years. As a journalist I understand the importance of keeping personal matters separate from my professional work — sometimes you have to do that retain your independence as a newsman. Those lines might have been unintentionally crossed yesterday by my [Facebook] post.”

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports Conners and his wife owe more than $85,000 in back taxes.

KMOV’s Larry Conners: After Interview With the President, ‘The IRS Started Hammering Me’

KMOV anchor Larry Conners suspects the IRS has been targeting him since he pressed President Obama during an interview last year. In a lengthy Facebook post Monday, Conners wrote, “almost immediately after the interview, the IRS started hammering me.”

“At the time, I dismissed the ‘co-incidence,’ but now, I have concerns … after revelations about the IRS targeting various groups and their members,” Conners wrote.

During the interview, Conners asked about government spending, telling the President that some KMOV viewers were concerned about the First Family “jetting around on different vacations” and wondered if he was “out of touch.”

“The President’s face clearly showed his anger; afterwards, his staff which had been so polite … suddenly went cold,” Conners wrote on Facebook. “What I don’t like to even consider … is that because of the Obama interview … the IRS put a target on me. Can I prove it? At this time, no. But it is a fact that since the April 2012 interview … the IRS has been pressuring me.”

Conners declined to comment for this post. Watch his 2012 interview with the President here. [h/t Politico]

KMOV, WFAA Win IRE Awards

KMOV in St. Louis and WFAA in Dallas-Fort Worth have won 2012 Investigative Reporters & Editors Awards.

KMOV’s Craig Cheatham and Jim Thomas won the IRE Award in the small Broadcast/Video category for “War Zone: The Destruction of an All-American City,” an hourlong documentary about political corruption in East St. Louis, Ill. Cheatham’s “dogged reporting and hard-hitting questions appear to get inside the minds of hardened politicos who admit to him their wrongdoing,” the judges wrote. The CBS affiliate’s report resulted in the resignation of a police chief and pending criminal charges and investigations.

WFAA’s Brett Shipp, Billy Bryant and Jason Trahan won in the medium Broadcast/Video category for “Unfair Game,” an examination of Texas high school coaches and administrators helping students illegally transfer school districts to put together top athletic teams. Shipp “used an inventive combination of social media and dogged reporting to show how high school athletics had been transformed into a business in which the best players were lured away from their neighborhood schools and sometimes across state lines,” the judges wrote. One coach was fired as result of the ABC affiliate’s report.

Chris Stanford Joins KMOV in St. Louis as Weekend Anchor

Chris Stanford will join St. Louis CBS affiliate KMOV as evening weekend anchor.

Stanford posted the news to his facebook page, “It’s been a great year and a half here at WCCO-TV. I feel I’ve learned a great deal and have worked with so many talented people. So, “where are you going”, you ask? St. Louis!! I start Monday at the CBS affiliate KMOV.”

Stanford comes to KMOV from WCCO in Minneapolis where he has been the morning anchor since August 2011.  He previously worked at WQOW in Eau Claire, WI.

News director Sean McLaughlin told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch Stanford will anchor his first newscast next weekend.

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