Fired Milwaukee Reporter Finds a New Life in Acting


Last Summer, FTVLive reported on the arrest of WTMJ Reporter Rob Koebel. He was busted for Justin Beibering (urinating) in public outside and Apple store. While being arrested, Koebel told the police "do you know who you're messing with?"

He was soon out of a job.  

And as the Milwaukee Journal reports, Rob Koebel is no longer a journalist.

But he plays one on an episode of USA's "Necessary Roughness," alongside guest star John Stamos.


He also has played a police officer, firefighter and Revolutionary War-era soldier on shows including NBC's "Revolution," the upcoming Fox series "Sleepy Hollow" and CBS' hit summer series "Under the Dome."

"I'd never have believed it if 10 months ago someone had told me I'd be part of a Stephen King-Steven Spielberg event that would be the hottest show of the summer," he said of "Under the Dome." The limited-run series is based on the book by King, and Spielberg is an executive producer.

Koebel appears in five episodes. In one, he plays a cop protecting a disgraced reporter. The irony was not lost on him.

"I didn't give her any tips," Koebel said. "But I think all of us in Chester's Mill," the town where the show takes place, "have a past."

Koebel's recent past is painful. Last August, he was arrested for disorderly conduct by Glendale police at Bayshore Town Center after urinating outside the Apple store. He said the incident was the culmination of a drinking binge triggered by his ex-wife, CNN reporter Christi Paul, talking publicly about emotional abuse during their marriage.

After quitting WTMJ, paying a $124 fine and paying for a broken police radio, Koebel moved to a facility in Greensboro, N.C., to be near family. He spent 90 days in rehab, now lives in a halfway house and is about to collect his 10-month sobriety chip from Alcoholics Anonymous.

Put like that, recovery sounds easy. Of course it wasn't.

"It was horrible. And it's been eye-opening," Koebel said. Two men he went through rehab with have since died of their addictions.

"I'm a recovering alcoholic, something I'll be all my life," Koebel said. "I have a sponsor, I go to meetings and I surround myself with sobriety." AA meetings "for me are like a diabetic having insulin shots."

He said that, while today his "life's not perfect, it's a hell of a lot better than it was when I left Milwaukee."

And yet his past is only as far away as the Google search engine. He said he lost one job after the company looked him up on the Internet. So he began looking for odd jobs. 

Read the rest from the Milwaukee Journal