Comet  Past use of subchannels[ edit ] From to , KCTV operated digital subchannels on virtual channels 5. In January , KCTV added its first full-time subchannel, with programming from Sinclair Broadcast Group and MGM 's science fiction-themed Comet network the use of subchannels previously varied among Meredith's stations, often either being used only for a local weather service or not being used at all; however since , Meredith-owned stations in several markets now carry subchannels affiliated with traditional and subchannel-exclusive networks.
Analog-to-digital conversion[ edit ] KCTV signed on its digital signal on November 8, , transmitting on UHF channel 24 and initially broadcasting only CBS programming in the network's i high-definition resolution, with local newscasts, syndicated programs and paid programming relayed from the station's analog signal being upconverted to i at all other times;  since September , KCTV transmits all local, network and syndicated programming in HD, with infomercials transmitted exclusively in the i standard-definition format preferred by most direct response production units.
The station's digital signal continued to broadcasts on its pre-transition UHF channel As several CBS affiliates in other markets have done since the program's April expansion into a one-hour broadcast, the station airs Face the Nation in separate half-hour blocks; the first half-hour typically airs on Sunday mornings and the second half-hour airs in late night on each edition's original airdate to accommodate a minute Sunday edition of KCTV 5 News This Morning during the NFL season, the full hour-long edition is often shown in the late-night slot to accommodate Kansas City Chiefs team programs that supplant both it and KCTV 5 News This Morning in the show's morning slot; sister station KSMO-TV regularly airs Face the Nation in its entirety on late Sunday evenings.
KCTV also carries the first two hours of the CBS Dream Team block on a two-hour delay from the "live" network feed to accommodate CBS This Morning Saturday and an hour-long edition of its morning newscast, and defers the third hour to Sundays, preceding CBS News Sunday Morning although college football and basketball games with late-morning start times that CBS is scheduled to air on certain Saturdays during the fall and winter may subject programs normally aired in the Channel 5 also occasionally preempted certain prime time shows in favor of locally produced or syndicated specials.
KCTV would eventually begin clearing the full CBS lineup by the early s, although it would continue to air certain programs out of pattern. Notably, it aired The Late Late Show on tape delay from its network-recommended Another of its most popular shows during this period was the horror film showcase Friday Fright Night, which was known for an opening sequence featuring a skull , with an announcer giving the lead-in of the program in both a spooky tone of voice and dialogue only to leave the shot with a prolonged sequence including a sound bite of hysterical laughter.
The station chose to preempt the program in the immediate aftermath of the catastrophic August walkway collapse at the Hyatt Regency Kansas City , out of sensitivity to avoid further traumatization of viewers already in shock over the disaster. However, Musacare had previously hosted various spook shows in other markets dating back to the s. One of the most common copies of the Star Wars Holiday Special comes from KCTV,[ citation needed ] which can be found as first to third generation bootleg copies.
Since CBS took over the AFC television contract, in addition to carrying most network-televised regular season games and occasional playoff games, KCTV has maintained a broadcast partnership with the team's Chiefs Television Network unit under which it holds the exclusive local rights to various weekly analysis and magazine programs including the coaches show Chiefs Kingdom, analysis shows Chiefs Insider and Chiefs Rewind, and the local pre-game show Price Chopper Game Day.
From to , Channel 5 also carried certain regular season Major League Baseball MLB games featuring the Kansas City Royals that were televised by CBS during the network's third contractual relationship with the league most Royals games aired locally on broadcast television during this period were carried by WDAF under a local broadcasting agreement between that station and the Royals, which lasted until the season. In addition, the station also produces the sports discussion program Off the Bench With Michael Coleman, which debuted on April 25, , and airs Sundays after the From to , the team of Wendall Anschutz and Anne Peterson — who both served as the main anchors of KCTV's weekday evening newscasts — led the station's newscasts to first place among the Kansas City market's three main local television news outlets of the time period.
Viewership for the station's newscasts fell to third place following WDAF's switch to Fox in September , as KMBC concurrently underwent a resurgence to overtake both stations to become the most watched television news operation in Kansas City. In , KCTV began leasing a helicopter to provide aerial coverage of breaking news and weather events; branded as "NewsHawk 5", the helicopter was grounded citing budget concerns in The station would eventually acquire a new helicopter for aerial newsgathering purposes, branded as "Chopper 5", in May Another radical change occurred on November 17, , when the station announced that it would shut down its in-house sports department and entered into an outsourcing agreement with local sports cable channel Metro Sports now Spectrum Sports , utilizing its staff at the channel's Swope Park facility to cover local professional, college and high school sports events.
Under the terms of the deal, the channel would produce sports segments seen on KCTV's evening newscasts seven nights a week, and sports specials and Kansas City Chiefs-related programs produced for the station.
Though Kirk Black cited research that indicated that most news viewers were not interested in sports, the move was criticized by many local sports radio hosts, who thought that Black's decision to shutter the sports department showed his lack of understanding the market's rabid sports fanbase.
Louis  and Dave Helling, joining those who had earlier left after accepting voluntary retirement packages including Anschutz, longtime "Call for Action" consumer reporter Stan Cramer and weekend sports anchor Jack Harry that were offered to Meredith employees in April Helling — who joined KCTV in following a six-year tenure as weekend evening anchor and reporter at WDAF-TV — was the partial subject of a March column in the Columbia Journalism Review , which chastised KCTV for a report that aired in December about the lax regulations that could allow consumers to purchase ammonium nitrate — a product used in making homemade improvised explosive devices — in violation of a law passed by the Kansas State Legislature after the Alfred P.
Murrah Federal Building bombing in Oklahoma City that prohibit the packaged sale of the substance. A lawsuit filed that same year by a longtime newscast director — which was cited by the Star in their report — alleged that the Meredith Corporation engaged in systematic harassment and dismissal of older employees. A judge denied KCTV's move to dismiss the suit; station management later reached a monetary settlement with the plaintiff.
On October 20, , beginning with its 4: In February , KCTV announced that it would not renew its production outsourcing agreement with Metro Sports past its initial three-year term in a mutual decision, with the station suspending the sports segments within its newscasts and Metro Sports continuing produce Chiefs preseason telecasts seen on channel 5. In February , Channel 5 aired a seven-part series of reports during its late-evening newscast that exposed the dangers that children can face on internet chat rooms.
Portland, Oregon -based Perverted Justice — a group specializing in operations uncovering online sexual solicitation of minors by paedophiles , which NBC News later partnered with as the basis for Dateline NBC 's To Catch A Predator series — partnered with KCTV to conduct a sting, in which several of its staffers posed as teenagers and preteens below the age of consent in chat rooms and waited for adult men to proposition them to engage in sexual acts or intercourse.
The "minors" then invited the men to meet them at a house where a KCTV news crew had set up to wait on the men who were baited. After the series aired, local law enforcement officials concerted a new effort to police chat rooms and prosecute adults who attempt to meet minors for sex through the internet. None of the 16 people "stung" by KCTV could be subjected to criminal charges in these instances as the operation was done without police involvement, however three filed defamation complaints one of the men, through his attorney, claimed that he terminated his online chat without finding out where the teen with whom he thought he had conversed had lived, only to be baited again after receiving a phone call from a woman employed with Perverted Justice pretending to be the teen and one filed a lawsuit against KCTV, Meredith and Perverted Justice on an entrapment complaint.
A scavenger gave the station a computer that was found at the curb of a Mission Hills, Kansas home owned by a plastic surgeon who claimed that he had erased the patient information database from its hard drive , which would have mitigated the risk of identity theft.
However, only the computer's random access memory was removed and the hard drive within the terminal was intact, containing photographs and files on many patients. KCTV attempted to contact several of the patients whose information was found on the discarded computer.
The surgeon filed a lawsuit against the station on the basis that the investigative unit's decision to interview the patients about the discovery was a violation of medical confidentiality laws; the judge presiding over the suit ruled in favor of the doctor, although KCTV management took the case to a federal district court in Kansas City, Kansas.
The doctor later withdrew the suit, clearing the way for the story to make it to air on June As a result of the findings, several of the surgeon's patients filed a class action lawsuit against him for negligent handling of their confidential records. Following a management change that the station had undergone in early , rumors speculated that KCTV was considering shutting down its entire investigative reporting unit.
Later that same month, the KCTV investigative unit was honored with several journalism awards, most pertinently having won Edward R. Murrow Awards for investigative journalism the KCTV news staff was also honored that year with Murrow and Mid-America Emmy Awards for overall news excellence, as well as multiple Emmys for its investigative reports.
Louis and now retired.