Pittsburgh TV Anchor Fired After Racist Facebook Post

Angela Bronner Helm
Wendy Bell and co-anchor Andrew Stockey on Aug. 1, 2014
Andrew Stockey via Twitter

A Pittsburgh-area news anchor was fired Wednesday after engaging in racial profiling of the worst kind on her official Facebook page, saying that the killers in a brutal area murder were “young black men,” reports the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

After a horrific mass shooting in early March in Wilkinsburg, Pa., near Pittsburgh, WTAE-TV news anchor Wendy Bell wrote on her Facebook page—before anyone was in custody: “You needn’t be a criminal profiler to draw a mental sketch of the killers who broke so many hearts two weeks ago Wednesday … they are young black men, likely in their teens or early 20s.”


And then, “They have multiple siblings from multiple fathers, and their mothers work multiple jobs.”


Bell, who had been with the station 18 years and won numerous regional Emmy Awards for her work, later apologized, saying, “I now understand that some of the words I chose were insensitive and could be viewed as racist. I regret offending anyone. I’m truly sorry.”

She has been off the air since last week.

A statement made today from Hearst Television, the station’s parent company, read, “WTAE has ended its relationship with anchor Wendy Bell. Wendy’s recent comments on a WTAE Facebook page were inconsistent with the company’s ethics and journalistic standards.”


As of Wednesday afternoon, Bell’s Facebook page had been taken down. Her profile on the WTAE-TV website also has been removed.

Read more at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

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