ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — A former Rochester weatherman who was fired from his position after an apparent on-air slip-up is now suing Mayor Lovely Warren.
Jeremy Kappell, a former Chief Meteorologist at WHEC, is suing the mayor on behalf of a “tortious interference with a business relationship, defamation, intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligent infliction of emotional distress” among other claims.
Kappell was fired from the local TV outlet after the apparent on-air slip-up where he uttered a racial slur while trying to reference “Martin Luther King Jr. Park” during a live broadcast. The mistake was recorded and posted online by a viewer who felt Kappell had used the slur on purpose.
Two days after the video was posted, which created some outrage among some viewers, Kappell was fired after a meeting with management. Kappell’s firing made headlines in Rochester and across the nation as people argued whether the firing was justified or not.
This lawsuit against Mayor Warren is in addition to one Kappell filed earlier against WHEC. That suit named WHEC-TV and WHEC’s parent company Hubbard Broadcasting.
WHEC let him go after they say they conducted an internal investigation. Kappell said he simply jumbled the words and didn’t notice the mistake.
In response to the lawsuit, City of Rochester Corporation Counsel Tim Curtin released this statement:
“The allegations made today are contradictory to the sworn statements made by Jeremy in my office on May 14, 2019. He was fired before the Mayor and the City Council President issued any public statement regarding his racial slur.”
The incident caught viewers’ attention throughout he country. Even Al Roker commented that Kappell shouldn’t have gotten fired.
Kappell vs. Warren
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