Former KVUE anchor lands high-profile Minneapolis gig

Cory Hepola
Cory Hepola

Congrats to former KVUE sports anchor Cory Hepola, who has landed a cush new gig in the Twin Cities.

Hepola, who left Austin to work as a featured anchor for the now-defunct Comcast SportsNet Houston, will take over as morning news co-anchor next month at KARE, the Minneapolis NBC affiliate.

A Minnesota native, KARE says Hepola is very familiar with the area, having attended the state’s Concordia College.

Hepola and his wife Camille are parents to a newborn child.

“Cory is a team player with a dynamic and energetic style for our morning audience,” said KARE news director Jane Helmke. “He is a dedicated, creative journalist and hometown guy who can’t wait to get started and contribute to his community.”

“In our search for a morning anchor, we were fortunate to find someone with the commitment and passion that Cory brings to the table,” said John Remes, KARE’s president and general manager. “We’re extremely excited that he’ll be a part of the award-winning KARE 11 family.”

KARE, like KVUE, is owned by broadcast giant Gannett.

KVUE dropping 24-hour weather channel

KVUE chief meteorologist Mark Murray
KVUE chief meteorologist Mark Murray

The forecast is grim for fans of KVUE’s digital weather channel.

Currently found on channel 24.3, the round-the-clock service features a mix of local and national forecasts, as well as live radar, traffic conditions and more.

But the launch of the Justice Network on Jan. 20 will displace that content, according to the station.

“As to the 24/7 Weather Channel, it has been a priority over the years and will remain a priority for KVUE to provide this vital information to our viewers,” president and general manager Patti Smith said in message to viewers. “With technological advances, we know that we can share this information in a variety of ways, and continue to serve Central Texas with the most comprehensive weather information. Towards that end, we suggest our viewers utilize, our KVUE Radar mobile app and the KVUE WeatherCast mobile app to provide the weather information previously displayed on our dot.3 channel.”

The Justice Network, when it debuts, will feature a variety of crime-focused programs, including many that previously aired on TruTV and its predecessor, Court TV. Some of those shows include “Alaska State Troopers,” “Body of Evidence,” “Dominick Dunne’s Power, Privilege and Justice,” “I, Detective,” “The Investigators,” “LA Forensics,” “Locked Up Abroad,” “Masterminds,” “Missing Persons Unit,” “Murder by the Book,” “Over the Limit” and “Psychic Detectives.”

Gannett, KVUE’s owner, signed a deal late last year adding the Justice Network to its stations nationwide.

The Justice Network to air in Austin

The Justice Network is set to debut in January.
The Justice Network is set to debut in January.

A new crime-focused TV network will sign on this January in cities across the country, including Austin.

The Justice Network will air as a digital subchannel on Gannett-owned stations nationwide, including KVUE.

Programming on the Justice Network will largely consist of repeats of shows that previously aired on other broadcast and cable networks, including “Alaska State Troopers,” “Body of Evidence,” “Dominik Dunne’s Power Privilege and Justice,” “I, Detective,” “The Investigators,” “LA Forensics,” “Locked Up Abroad,” “Masterminds,” “Missing Persons Unit,” “Murder by the Book,” “Over the Limit” and “Psychic Detectives.”

Local affiliates will also contribute content, such as safety tips and details on wanted criminals and missing children.

“Recognizing that by 2013, half of the top 50-rated prime shows on television were justice-oriented programming, our management team saw the need to satisfy America’s obsession with justice,” said Steve Schiffman, Justice Network’s CEO. “We are proud to be a part of this unique multicast network’s efforts to make a difference in people’s lives, fight crime and to keep communities safer.”