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Posts Tagged ‘WJXT’

Questions Raised Over Jacksonville Sheriff’s Handling of Local Reporter’s Tickets

mitchem_wjxtThe Florida Times-Union is looking into why the Jacksonville County Sheriff voided two tickets and a misdemeanor summons for WJXT reporter Ashley Mitchem.

Mitchem had been ticketed by Officer Jose Marrero for speeding, failure to change her address and a misdemeanor notice to appear for having the emblem of the Fraternal Order of Police on her car after two previous warnings to remove it.

Sheriff John Rutherford recently ordered the tickets and the misdemeanor voided, violating department rules in the process.

Bob Ellis, vice president and general manager for WJXT, told TVSpy, ““Ashley was stopped for alleged traffic violations on more than one occasion in the early morning hours of the day en route to work, always by the same police officer.  She believed she was being put in a potentially uncomfortable situation and as such, called the Sheriff and asked him for advice on how to formally and properly handle the matter.  To suggest there is anything more to this story is irresponsible.”

An official with the Jacksonville Sheriff’s department claimed Marrero was stalking Mitchem and that’s why the tickets were voided. Marrero had pulled Mitchem over twice before and let her off with a warning. Read more

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WJXT Adds An Hour of Morning News


Jacksonville Independent station WJXT is expanding its morning news by an hour at 9:00 a.m. starting Monday.

The station told viewers on its facebook page, “The Morning Show is expanding! Starting Monday, WJXT4 Nikki Kimbleton and WJXT4 Tarik Minor will anchor our new weekday 9 a.m. hour. We have some great segments in store … tune in!”

The anchors also announced the move during this morning’s show and gave each other high fives all around while promising to “keep it real.”

Joy Purdy Returns to WJXT

Joy Purdy is returning to Jacksonville’s independent station WJXT.

The station announced Purdy will anchor its 5:30, 6:30 and 11:00 p.m. newscasts.

“We’ve been looking for just the right person to join Mary Baer, Tom Wills and Rob Sweeting in the evenings,” said WJXT vice president and general manager Bob Ellis in a statement. “Joy is like so many of us, trying to find the time to balance all the things important in life between home and work. To have her back with her original TV family at The Local Station and bring that perspective to our viewers who are trying to do the same thing is the perfect match.”

Purdy worked at WJXT from 1995 to 2000 as an anchor and reporter before leaving for Miami’s WFOR. She came back to Jacksonville as anchor for First Coast News. In March, she left the station after being offered the 11:00 p.m. anchor position, saying she wanted to take a short break from TV to spend more time with her family.

[The Florida Times-Union]

Judge Won’t Hold WJXT In Contempt After Airing Report It Was Told Not to Air

Saying the station made a mistake “as human beings do at times,” a Florida Circuit judge has decided not to hold WJXT in contempt after airing an arrest report it was ordered by the court not to air.

According to the Florida Times-Union, the station obtained a copy of an arrest report that showed the confession of  James Patrick Tadros who was charged with attempted murder, false imprisonment and criminal mischief after allegedly attacking a nine-year-old girl in the restroom of a local Best Buy store.

When the State Attorney’s Office heard WJXT had a non-redacted version showing the confession, Circuit Judge Adrian Soud issued a temporary injunction known as prior restraint barring the station from airing the police report.

But the station aired the report the next day. Tuesday, Judge Soud ruled “The Court concludes that employees of WJXT TV-4, as human beings do at times, made a mistake.”

The court has yet to decide whether it will eventually allow the station to publish the report. “It’s hard to imagine a circumstance in which the judge could have told a TV station that it could not print this document,” Gregg Leslie, a staff attorney with the Reporters Committee for the Freedom of the Press told the Times-Union. “There’s almost never going to be a valid justification for prior restraint.”

TVSpy has reached out to WJXT. We will update when we hear back.

Jennifer Waugh Moves to Mornings at WJXT as Staci Spanos Transitions to Reporting Role

Jennifer Waugh (left) is moving from evenings to mornings at WJXT, the independent station in Jacksonville. She will replace Staci Spanos (right), who will transition to a reporter role on the morning newscast.

“I’m not going anywhere,” Spanos said in a statement. “This is my TV family. I’m simply downshifting my role here just a bit so I can spend more time with my family at home.”

Spanos will continue anchoring on a limited basis, according to WJXT. Waugh will co-anchor alongside Bruce Hamilton and meteorologist Richard Nunn.

“Jen’s the pre-eminent investigative journalist in Jacksonville; she’s in a class by herself,” WJXT VP-GM Bob Ellis said in a statement. “Now the morning audience will benefit from her experience both reporting news, and growing up here in town. She’s a fabulous addition to a terrific team.”

Matt Horn Joins Capitol News Service

Matt Horn begins today at Capitol News Service, where he will cover political news for ten local stations in Florida.

Horn comes from Wichita, where he was Salina bureau chief and general assignment reporter at KSNW. In his new role, he will be based in Tallahassee.

Capitol News Service provides political reporting to several national outlets, as well as WFLA in Tampa, WTVJ in Miami, WFTV in Orlando, WINK in Fort Myers, WPTV in West Palm Beach, WCJB in Gainesville, WCTV in Tallahassee, WJHG in Panama City, WEAR in Pensacola and WJXT in Jacksonville.

Reporter Brett Buffington Joins WIS

Brett Buffington has been hired as an investigative reporter at WIS, the NBC affiliate in Columbia, S.C.

Buffington was most recently a reporter and multimedia journalist at WJBF, the ABC Affiliate in Augusta. He was nominated for an Emmy for investigative reporting during his two-year tenure at the station. He has also worked at WJXT, the independent station in Jacksonville, Fla.

Buffington begins at WIS on April 24.

Nick Giovanni Moves From Jacksonville to Houston

Nick Giovanni is joining Houston NBC-affiliate KPRC, Houston media blogger Mike McGuff reports.

Giovanni joins KPRC from WJXT, an independent station in Jacksonville, where he has been a sports anchor, reporter and producer since 2005. He made his on-air debut at KPRC last week.

And in other Houston media news, McGuff reports that Courtney Zubowski, a reporter at CBS-affiliate KHOU, has joined the station’s investigative reporting team.

Obama Talks Rural Economic Plan with Local Stations

President Obama discussed the details of his rural economic plan, which he unveiled yesterday, in interviews with eight local stations on Monday morning.

Obama was interviewed by Tom Wills of WJXT, Matt Breen of WTIV, Matt Smith of WBAY, Warren Armstrong of KFSN, Hollani Davis of WDBJ, Don Ward of KKTV, Kristen Remington of KTVN (pictured) and Michael Cogdill of WYFF.

Obama also discussed healthcare reform, the Wisconsin recall election and the health of Commerce Secretary John Bryson, who is taking a medical leave of absence after reportedly suffering a seizure over the weekend. Read more

Another Round of Local Press for President Obama

With the election drawing closer, President Obama is doing another round of local press today.

The stations at the White House today are WDBJ in Roanoke, KKTV in Colorado Springs, KTVN in Reno, WJXT in Jacksonville, KTIV in Sioux City, WBAY in Green Bay, WYFF in Greenville, SC and KFSN in Fresno, CA.

In addition to a five-minute sitdown with the President, the reporters will also take a tour of the White House and the kitchen garden, and conduct interviews with administration officials from each respective market, according to CNN.

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