A.J. Clemente got his big break on Sunday, April 21, as the new weekend anchor for NBC affiliate KFYR-TV in Bismarck, N.D. But less than 24 hours later, he’s looking for work again, having been fired by the station for opening his first-ever broadcast with profanity.
Clemente’s co-anchor, Van Tieu, was introducing her colleague at the start of the Sunday evening report when he let slip a couple of curse words. (In video of the incident — which went viral afterward and got “KeepAJ” trending on Twitter — he appears unaware that he’s on camera at the time.) The station later posted an apology online, and Van Tieu expressed regrets during the 10 p.m. broadcast, but the damage to Clemente’s career had already been done.
“That couldn’t have gone any worse,” he tweeted after the gaffe. “Tough day, thanks for the support, we all make mistakes. I’m truly sorry for mine. I’ll try my hardest to come back better and learn from this.”
It appears he won’t get the chance — at least, not at KFYR-TV. According to CBS News, the station said Sunday night that Clemente had been suspended. And on Monday morning, the rookie anchor posted some bad news on Twitter.
“Unfortunately, KFYRTV has decided to let me go,” he wrote. “Thank you to them and everyone in ND for the opportunity and everyone for the support.”
A few minutes later, he added: “Rookie mistake. I’m a free agent. Can’t help but laugh at myself and stay positive. Wish I didn’t trip over my ‘freaking shoes’ out of the gate.”
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