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WPLG fires anchor Charles Perez

  • Click here to read Charles Perez’s complaint
  • Click here to read WPLG-ABC 10’s rebuttal
  • Click here to read WPLG-ABC 10’s statement upon firing Perez 

    BY STEVE ROTHAUS, srothaus@MiamiHerald.com

    perez photoWPLG-ABC 10 has fired anchor Charles Perez, days after he filed a discrimination complaint against the Post-Newsweek station.

    “His employment has been terminated,” Perez’s business attorney Melanie E. Damian told The Miami Herald Thursday afternoon. “We filed a charge of discrimination last week. We will now amend that to include his termination as part of his claims.”

    Perez also confirmed that he is no longer employed by WPLG, but said he couldn’t discuss the case until after he speaks with his agent.

    "WPLG is disappointed that the actions of Charles Perez left us no real choice other than to terminate his employment contract," WPLG Vice President and General Manager Dave Boylan said in a statement to The Herald. "WPLG emphatically denies Perez's claim of discrimination. The document he is circulating is filled with misstatements and untruths."

    Late last week, Perez filed a discrimination complaint with Miami-Dade's Equal Opportunity Board.

    Perez, 46, says in the complaint that station bosses demoted him to weekend anchor/reporter "because of their discomfort over the increasingly high profile of my sexual orientation."

    On April 3, Perez went to court seeking a restraining order against his former partner, Dennis Ricardo Peña, whom he accused of leaking a private e-mail concerning Perez’s ‘’gender identity issues.’’

    Later that month, Perez claims he "began to disappear'' from station promotional spots. He lost the weeknight anchor seat July 22.

    Station executives recently told Miami Herald columnist Joan Fleischman their decision was driven by economics.

    WPLG Vice President and News Director Bill Pohovey denied Perez's claims: ``This is an outrageous accusation," Pohovey said Monday in a statement to The Herald. ``As a gay man myself, I can safely say the Station does not discriminate against gay people. Charles' claim that the Station discriminates against gay people is untrue and offensive."

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    LOL I didn't watch WPLG Local before Charles got there BECAUSE OF Dwight and Laurie...

    One less deviant !!! The battle continues to take back Miami and all of South Florida. Homosexuals live a immoral lifestyle and have a deviant behavior. Hopefully he will leave South Florida, maybe head to san fran the cesspool in California and take a few with him...

    I think Charles is soooo cute. I also enjoyed his reporting. If Channel 10 has truly discriminated against him, I hope they are made to pay. What a HUNK!

    I had no idea Dwight Lauderdale was gay.

    HE IS NOT GAY!!!! u idiots. I miss Dwight Lauderdale!!!!!!!!!!!!

    so why in God's great world did we not see this type conduct by management in the Newsplex at WSVN Miami's glamour and glitz TV-7; there's a great talking point and things have been pretty quiet and status quo there when one would think these very issues would have erupted long ago; few can disagree w/me on that obvious observation.

    That is why I will not support or watch wplg 10. I still remember how they pushed the former weather guy Don. I guess you better be perfect or else. Today the gay community tomorrow the BLacks, Latinos, and etc.

    You anchor Women (Former Beauty Queens, etc) expect to be next this is only the start. I hope he stays in the area. He was a good guy, that din't hurt any one. Personal attacks on a good anchor. Ladies, take notice? don't laught at what happend to him.>>>Your next! I bet you!!

    I am so sad for CHARLES PEREZ, and so ashamed of WPLG Channel 10. I really enjoyed watching the combination of CHARLES PEREZ and LAURIE JENNINGS. They made a BEAUTIFUL PAIR. It was bad enough to demote Charles to weekend anchor, but now they've gone and fired him for standing up for his rights! I had no idea he was Gay until I read it in the Herald...and it doesn't matter one iota to me if he is Gay or Straight. He was GREAT!!

    The baloney about the demotion being about saving money really angers me, since there is no other local station that puts on as many "Infomercials" as Channel 10 does! They have even taken off their weekend late night Sports Report, and they go straight to Infomercials after the news ends The other stations all continue with their late night programs. This means that they are bringing in much more money than the other local stations, so why are they having to demote and fire people?? It's just a bad excuse!!

    I now know for sure that I will watch one of the other local stations instead of Channel 10, although that had always been my station of (first) choice. I had already cut back on how much I watched it, but did watch Charles on the weekends. Now I will definitely not watch Local 10 unless and until they rescind his firing and put him back on the air. Hopefully, another local station will be smart enough to grab him up, and not allow him to leave the area. It would be a great loss for South Florida.

    I have every intention of making my feeling known to Channel 10 and to ABC and Disney, it's parent companies. I am not the only one who feels this way. All my friends and family do too!!

    What does his sexual preference have to do with his journalistic ability?I think he did a fine job of delivering the news in a very professional manner,and would like to see him back.
    He obviously won't be back but there is no doubt he will win the lawsuit because Ch.10 is wrong in this situation.

    really this is what the tv business is all about; find the prettiest men and women who can scribble some fast notes and read from a reporters pad, touch up the lines and aging on their faces,while out in the field reporting, try and act not so very very plastic and fake while on air; and act like they are a step above and ahead of all the rest of us common folks; so forget the fact of his sexual inclinations and whether his former companion deep sixed him or not, that is irrelevant and that is their private laundry to air out----the General Mgr, will regret his commentary later on if in fact those were his words as Chas. has the rest of the news room to lean on later on when needed; fact of the matter is the business is knock down drag out tough lovin and back-stabbing and we just do not see any of that at six or eleven; we see brite shiny faces; perfect hair and teeth kids most out of journalism school that shouldn't oughta even be on the air and we accept that for our nightly news; expect more of this on all the locals as they find ways to bounce others out while the higher ups protect their nest eggs their lagging bottom lines and and the 401k's; take that to the bank.

    As a 20-year TV news veteran, I can assure you the decision to fire Charles Perez did not come from News Director Bill Pohovey.
    Those decisions are made at a higher level.
    Post-Newsweek is a huge corporation and there is no doubt someone much higher than Pohovey dropped the hammer on Chaz. Pohovey has hired numerous gay anchors and reporters at every station he has worked at. I have never known him to discriminate againt homosexuals.
    But this business is very unforgiving and it's really sad that if you screw up , its almost impossible to get a second chance.

    I can honestly say that WPLG has been been my favorite news station, both while living in Miami from 1984-1989 and since return to South Florida in 2006.

    I remember Ann, Chuck, Dwight, Don -- watched Chuck at WSB in Atlanta for 15 years, and viewed both Don and Dwight's farewell broadcasts.

    That's a lot of personal viewer loyalty that WPLG has just lost. I'm just one household but it will be one household less watching Local 10 going forward.

    Business is business but employees have rights and consumers have choices. Very bad business decision WPLG!

    Good luck Charles. Your professionalism will be missed!

    This is a good start towards cleaning all of these perverts out of trusted institutions. People like this that lack self control cannot be trusted on television shows which can be watched by families and children.

    fredb is back again... Why don't you crawl back into the steaming piece of dog crap you crawled out of and die you ignorant, backwards, homophobic, bible thumping, hypocritical maggot. You too Jerry. I have no doubt that you consider yourselves good god fearing christians, but your behavior is the furthest from "christian like" (if there is such a thing) that I can imagine. I hope all of your children grow up gay. I used to be proud to be american, but animals like you have made me embarrassed to even admit it. No wonder americans are hated around the world.

    What has Charles Perez done to you? He has been nothing but professional, sincere and has connected with his viewers.

    I know a lot of people, both homosexual and heterosexual. I have made sure they all know what has happened and they are all so outraged that they have committed not to watch WPLG Local 10 at all, not just the news but everything and they will also tell everyone they know. I have also made them aware that we can all contact Disney and ABC to voice our disapproval for the blatant discrimination against Charles Perez based on sexual orientation by WPLG Local 10. I have made it my mission to make sure that WPLG Local 10 loses as many viewers as possible and make sure that WPLG Local 10, ABC and Disney all know that WE MISS AND SUPPORT CHARLES PEREZ and we will not stand for this type of discriminatory behavior!!

    ftlaudcarl......You ought to go back and read your own post. You are saying things about someone you know "nothing" about, but you continue to anyway without any basis other than this person does not agree with you. Now where is that known homosexual support for freedom of choice ????? On the flip side we know all that is necessary about homosexuals, they are living a deviant lifestyle, NOT a normal lifestyle, an IMMORAL, DEVIANT lifestyle !! I don't need to know whether they mow their lawn, pay their bills on time or are cute, I know all that is necessary in my determination to NOT agree with the standards they are putting forth. Isn't it interesting when homosexuals get angry, they revert to "insulting" others by condeming their children to be gay, SOOOOOO even you recognize the being homosexual is a "bad thing" !?! And, maybe even more interesting is, you somehow equate not agreeing with you to not being a good American, that's like saying you and blacks have the same struggle, what a croc !!! You obiviously need a High School refresher coarse. If you determine whether you love and are proud to be an American by other citizen's agreeing with you on being homosexual, YOU have a much bigger problem than just being gay. Back to the subject at hand. ALL TV stations do their best to support and react to their viewers. Do you think for one minute they would keep an anchor in place that is especially, NOT RESPECTED for his deviant lifestyle, just because of being pc or to please you ?? I emailed Mr. Perez long before this started and received a response from him. But I as well as obiviously thousands of others didn't stop there, we also contacted the WPLG management, ABC, and Disney, but also Brokers, stock anyalsts etc etc. So you see there was a much larger response that could not be ignored by a public driven company than you or your friends will ever mount. Mr. Perez knows this. He knew the minute he started getting emails, his place here was through. The biggest mistake you made in your email is equating your opinion of this to being "discriminatory". In your mind maybe you think that way. I am sure pediphiles may think they are being discriminated againist too with our laws, but the majority is allowed to determine what is right for society and what is wrong. The pendulum swings back and forth thru time. The silent majority has had enough and is finally waking up and reacting to this deviant behavior. And with encouragement, hopefully homosexuals with see the light......... By the way, keep using the word "homophobic" it is not bad, and really is a badge of honor.

    Charles, the Gay Community in Wilton Manors is behind you.

    it is an embarrassment that channel 10 has fired charles perez. he was terrific and very good at reporting the news. it is very obvious that laurie jennings is struggling and the ratings are going to suffer badly. charles gave a real sharpness to the news program and laurie just doesn't have it. he did his job so well and was so professional and is a real class act. laurie is very boring. i have always favored watching channel 10 however now i have lost a lot of respect for what has happened. if ann bishop was alive she would be mortified and i'm sure dwight is glad he is no longer part of the channel 10 news team. you made a huge mistake that will cost the station dearly. charles definitely is owed an apology on the air and you need to fire bill pohovey. channel 10 used to be way too classy for this nonsense however not anymore.

    It is an embarrassment that channel 10 ever employed this pervert. Now that he is gone I will now watch channel 10 all of the time as will all of my friends. Channel 10 is now the clear leader in family friendly news in the south florida market.

    I didn't know he was gay, nevertheless I don't care. Never liked Laurie at channel 7 and still don't like her. Who wants to watch her with no co-anchor. At least with Charles you could actually put up with her. Ann Bishop never came out but everyone knew it and yet everyone watched. Charles better things will come your way.

    Who the hell is Dwight? Actually, who cares. All news people are lame.

    I'm Irish, conservative, a mom, wife and devout catholic and I'm sick of this homophobia bleeding heart liberal garbage! Fact is homosexuality is an immoral act, not to mention filthy dirty and unsanitary.

    And for all those pro gay rights morons and some that think they can be gay it doesn't affect me...I say bunk!

    It does, just think of innocent people that contracted hiv aids from gays that tainted the blood supply and caused innocent heterosexual people to contract hiv aids, so yeah it does affect you, even now with the blood supply greatly improved there is still a risk.

    As for Channel 10 they did the right thing there is no need to flaunt their homosexuality and rub it in people's noses, which according to channel 10 is what he did.

    I'm sick of this liberal garbage about gays being a "minority" they are not! They chose to be gay they are not born gay, but they love to advance the lie they were born that way so they can advance their pro gay agenda.

    Well I spoke my peace, I'm just your hard nosed Irish conservative "mick" that cannot be intimidated by the liberal goon squad LOL Thats right Mr Mike I say this without apology or exception!


    I lived in Los Angeles for many years before coming to Fort Lauderdale. I have always watched ABC for news and innovative programs. They always have people that you want to listen to, are knowledgable and seem to like each other. Laurie and Charles were a great team but to say they were "like girlfriends" is insulting to everyone. I love Laurie. She looks like she just came from winning the Miss America contest. She is all class and I loved her with Charles.

    Hey Heather...... RIGHT ON THE MONEY !!!!! You're right, it's time to speak our minds and not let the pc deviants intimidate anyone !!

    Certainly if Miami can put up with the likes of Louie Agguire
    It should tolerate Charles perez who is less flamboyant, a better reporter and better looking

    My lesbian neighbor, who looked very masculine, and had a lesbian lover, was the manager for the cosmetics department at a well-known department store locally and has recently moved out of the area. She told me that she refused to hire gay men to work the cosmetics counter.

    Being gay or lesbian does not preclude one from discriminating aginst one's own kind.

    My partner and I have stopped watching Local 10 as our news station.

    How can we get rid of Laurie Jennings?
    She reads the news like she's reading to a pre-school class.
    Now she's even doing sports!
    The only good anchors left on WPLG are Jacey Birch and Calvin Hughes.
    I'm switching to 4.

    please dwight looked gayer this this guy.. im gay and i never watch wplg they suck have you even seen thier webpage its like 1990 style.

    Sue the hell out of them charles. being in the military and having faced issues exactly like yours was crazy after that i had to deny i was gay to my senior officers, after my boyfriend wrote them an email stating i was gay only because i had said i didnt want to date him anymore. then at work i was never treated the same, which eventually lead to me coming out and being discharged. If WPLG wants to play you take that swing and knock the ball out of the park. one thing I learned about this was who we are is not a deficiency. That station has alot of growing up to do thats why I always watch WSVN. they may be a bit more dramatic which I hate but their anchors reflect the community.

    Isnt wlrn affliated with channel 10? someone please respond to this if this is the case they wont get anymoney from me anymore. i been listening to them since i was 17 im 34 now.you can reply below please

    I just returned from a business trip and put on the news and was surprised to find out that
    Charles Perez is no longer on Local 10 news.
    Charles was such a great anchor that I never knew
    he was gay. So what if he is gay. He was great at reporting the news and that is his personal business. WPLG you have really made a mistake because I know that you have lost a great anchor. Honestly it's not the same without him.
    This is really too bad. Wish you Well Charles, remember that one door closes and 20 open.

    Charles Perez was the reason I watched chanel 10. The class he has was so refreshing after watching south florida news shows. Some of the people on the news look like they are going to the beach or just plain rediculos. South fla already has police/court corruption up the ass, bad transit, filthy streets and no jobs off the top of my head.Now we have idiots running the news. What a shame. Charles, you are welcome here anytime buddy, Gary Gookins

    I don't know why they'd fire him for being gay; he wasn't exactly in the closet. He was Norman Korpi's boyfriend in the first season of The Real World, for god's sake.

    I was just reading that it's illegal to retaliate and terminate someone for filing a discrimination complaint. Sounds to me like a lawsuit, and one he'll win.

    I was shocked when I learned of Charles Perez' termination through a small local publication.

    Frankly, I tend to think that there was in all likelihood some form of discrimination against Mr. Perez on the basis of his being gay.

    Plus, it is questionable, to say the least, when a station that took pains to repeatedly promote Mr. Perez as "The real thing." in its aired ads would do such a turnabout in terms of turning against the anchorman.

    Meanwhile, life goes on at Local 10 News, with Laurie Jennings serving as primary solo anchor; and doing a competent job for the most part; and with the quality of the anchoring sometimes-substitute and primarily regular weekend achorperson Rob Schmitt apparently much-improved of late (for reasons unknown).

    Meant: "anchorperson".

    Please excuse the typo.


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