Local Missouri journalist, Kevin Steincross, apologized for mispronouncing Martin Luther King Jr.’s name in what came out as a racial slur during a broadcast, saying on Friday he was very sorry about the mistake and it was not his intention to be disrespectful.
“I want to take a moment to apologize,” the KTVI-TV reporter said. “We have heard from a viewer about a mistake I made in our 5 a.m. newscast this morning. In our story about the tribute to Dr. King, I unfortunately mispronounced his name. Please know I have total respect for Dr. King, what he meant and continues to mean to our country. This was not intentional in any way, and I sincerely apologize.”
Although Steincross didn’t specify his error, around 5:30 a.m. on Thursday, he accidentally substituted King’s last name with a racial slur used toward African-Americans.
“Back here at home a special event will get under way this morning to remember Dr. Martin Luther C— Jr.’s life and also honor those in the St. Louis community who carry out his dream,” Steincross said, with the moment fluidly passing to a reporter in the field.
The story was first reported by the local St. Louis Post Dispatch, which also confirmed that Steincross would not face consequences for the error from the station’s owners at Tribune Broadcasting.
“The Fox2 management team spoke to Kevin following the mistake and we believe that it was truly inadvertent and does not reflect Kevin’s core beliefs,” a Tribune spokesperson told the paper. “Kevin is extremely upset by the mistake and regrets it deeply.”
Upstate New York state meteorologist Jeremy Kappell lost his job just days ago after an almost identical mistake on air.