NY Meteorologist Fired After Saying A Racial Slur On Air

NY Meteorologist Fired After Saying A Racial Slur On Air

WHEC's Chief Meteorologist Jeremy Kappell referred to a park with an ice skating rink as "Martin Luther Coon King Park". "Park during our Friday evening broadcast", Reingold said. "If you watch me regularly you know that I tend to contain a lot of information in my weathercast, which forces me to speak fast and unfortunately I spoke a little too fast when I was referencing Dr. Martin Luther King Jr".

'I would never want to tarnish the reputation of a such a great man as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., one of the greatest civic leaders of all time'. "And to say "coon" in association with his name is deplorable and unacceptable", said Richard McCollough President of Rochester Association of Black Journalists. Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren, Council President Loretta Scott and the Rochester City Council released a combined statement, criticizing the station for its failure to immediately address the slur.

"With that being said I'm so disappointed that my career could end this way, and extremely disappointed at the decisions at my television station whom I expected a certain level of support from which I did not receive at all", Kappell said.

"These words have no place on News10NBC's air, and the fact that we broadcast them disheartens and disgusts me; that it was not caught immediately is inexcusable".

Kappell was joined by his wife in his video statement, saying he had been a meteorologist for almost 20 years and was disappointed in the station's decision to fire him and thanking people for support during what he called an ordeal.

Kappell said the incident was a "simple misunderstanding" in a Facebook video. That ("coon") was not a word I said, I promise you that. If you did feel that it hurt you in any way in any way I sincerely apologize.

While Kappell maintains he simply misspoke and called it "unintentional bubbling", viewers and local officials heard the phrase and found it offensive.

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"While we are aware that the station has issued an apology, we expect a complete explanation of what happened, who was responsible and why nothing was said immediately after the Friday broadcast", the statement read in part. "I regret that we did not immediately interrupt our broadcast and apologize on the spot". "So fast to the point where I jumbled a couple of words", he said in the video.

WHEC general manager Richard Reingold wrote on the station's website that the station made a "staffing change" Sunday.

The statement continues, "As a result of that broadcast meteorologist, Jeremy Kappell is no longer with News10NBC".

"First, it seems unlikely even the most rabid racist would say something like that on the air".

Kappell, a graduate of Purdue University, previously worked as a meteorologist in Kentucky, where he was awarded best weather anchor in 2016.

He began at WHEC-TV in October 2017 succeeding longtime meteorologist Kevin Williams.

A heartfelt thanks to all those who have been supporting us.

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