FTVLive FIRST told you back on the 18th that KNSD NBC San Diego Noon Anchor Mari Payton (pictured) is being bumped down to the reporter ranks.
Today the station tried to spin the demotion as a promotion. The announced that it will be "enhancing" its “I-Team” investigative reporting unit by dedicating two additional full-time staffers, Mari Payton as lead reporter and Wendy Fry as producer.
Payton currently works on investigative pieces part-time along with her midday anchor duties and Fry works on the assignment desk. With the additional allocation of resources to investigative journalism, Christine Haas, currently anchoring the 4 and 5 p.m. newscasts, will expand her anchor duties to include the midday newscast.
FTVLive FIRST reported that Hass would be taking over for Payton.
“While we’ve done some great enterprise work, we’re excited to dedicate even more resources and attention to the investigative beat, with Mari and Wendy now also focusing full-time on this important work in addition to the existing members of our I-Team,” said Greg Dawson, KNSD VP of news. “We expect this shift in duties for both Mari and Wendy to be a game-changer for the I-Team’s work and look forward to the positive impact they will make in the San Diego community.”