BISMARCK, N.D. (CBS Seattle) — Talk about an awful first day on the job.
A news anchor in North Dakota has been fired after uttering obscenities for his first words on-air in a video that has gone viral across the country.
KFYR-TV in Bismarck, N.D., fired A.J. Clemente, a recent West Virginia University graduate, after an open microphone caught him saying “f***ing s***” as Sunday’s newscast began. The station apologized following the incident.
“He did not realize his microphone was on, but still, that’s no excuse,” Monica Hannan, the station’s news director, said in a statement on KFYR’s Facebook page. “WE train our reporters to always assume that any microphone is live at any time. Unfortunately, that was not enough in this case. WE can’t take back what was said.”
Clemente announced on Twitter Monday that the station let him go.
“Unfortunately KFYRTV has decided to let me go,” Clemente said. “Thank you to them and everyone in ND for the opportunity and everyone for the support.”
Clemente, who called the incident a “rookie mistake,” apologized for what he said.
“Tough day, thanks for the support, we all make mistakes,” Clemente tweeted. “I’m truly sorry for mine. I’ll try my hardest to come back better and learn from this.”
After the video went viral, people flooded the station’s Facebook page, supporting Clemente.
“I think we’re all adults and are quite capable of getting over it. It’s a non-issue,” Linn Vahey Holloway wrote. “You don’t incorporate profanity in your newscasts, and everyone makes a mistake now and again, so let them off the hook and proceed as normal.”
“This kid is probably torturing himself over what happened. Go easy on him, as we all make mistakes,” Wade Alvarez said.
Clemente also clarified he did not say “gay” before uttering the obscenities on air as he was practicing trying to pronounce the winner of the London Marathon.
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