Thursday, December 3, 2020

MN-IA Radio: WHMH Morning Host EXITS After Inter-Station Bullying

WHMH Former morning host Aaron Imholte

WHMH 101.7 FM
in St. Cloud, MN is down one host after Aaron Imholte resigned following an on-air verbal attack targeting another radio host on another station in another state.

Imholte had dedicated much of his Nov. 20 broadcast to ridiculing Heather Lee, co-host of “Fish & Heather,” a morning program that had premiered earlier in the month on KAZR Lazer 103.3 FM in Des Moines.

The Star-Tribune reported Tuesday that Imholte lashed into Lee, claiming that he had applied for the Iowa gig and that Lee was unqualified for the job. “I’m upset that a girl was allowed on a morning show,” he said on his “Steel Toe Morning Show” on rock station WHMH.

Lee, who had recently been broadcasting at a Hubbard-owned radio station in Seattle, said she could tolerate the digs about her on-air performance. But she balked when listening back at the personal insults, which included vicious comments on her weight and age.

“We will bury her in the ground. This chick is toast,” Imholte had said on the air. “We’re bullying today.  At one point, Imholte urged his listeners to start a rumor that Lee uses the “N word” in her personal life.

KAZR's Heather Lee
“Those were the types of things I found predatory,” Lee said in a phone interview Monday. “Comments inciting your fans to defame me on top of demoralization? That’s crossing the line.”

During an e-mail exchange Monday, Imholte says he was the victim of a “hatchet job” with Lee purposely taking his jokes out of context.

“They know they pulled a dirty move,” he wrote in the e-mail. “We are a comedy show built on sarcasm and satire. We did a segment two days previous lecturing guys that women have a terrible time in bars and how crappy it must be to go out and have to watch your drinks and hang out in groups because of the creepy things guys do. The herd mentality doesn’t decipher those things. They know only blood lost [sic]. They got me off the radio, but they pushed me out of a nest I needed to leave.”

Ownership at Tri-Country Broadcasting, which owns WHMH, did not respond to an interview request.

No comments:

Post a Comment