Vince DeMentri Lands at WICS: ‘I don’t think you can judge anybody’s character by an incident or two’

By Merrill Knox Comment

Local news veteran Vince DeMentri, who has a long history of controversy at his previous jobs, has landed at WICS in Springfield, Ill., the State Journal Register reports.

DeMentri’s last job was at WPIX, the CW affiliate in New York City, where he was a reporter until 2010. Prior to that, he worked at WCAU, the NBC O&O in Philadelphia. At both stations, he was involved in incidents that catapulted him into the spotlight.

In 2008, DeMentri was fired from WCAU after having an affair with co-anchor Lori Delgado. DeMentri, who was accused of vandalizing Delgado’s car, sued both her and the station, saying it was unfair that he was fired and Delgado got to keep her job. Delgado resigned from the station the day the lawsuit was filed; DeMentri dropped the lawsuit in 2010.

While at WPIX, DeMenrti was arrested for assault after the chauffeur for a UN ambassador accused DeMentri of slapping him during an argument over a parking space. He was later cleared of all charges.

In the wake of the 9/11 attacks in 2001, DeMentri was arrested for impersonating an Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms agent at Ground Zero. That charge, too, was eventually dismissed.

The State Journal-Register in Springfield talks to DeMentri, as well as the WICS executive news director, about the anchor’s past:

“The vast majority of what’s been reported is inaccurate,” DeMentri said of the controversies.

“I don’t think you can judge anybody’s character by an incident or two in life,” he said. “Nobody’s ever questioned my work, my work ethic. … I’m a good person. And I hope to be able to show that to the people of Springfield.”

“We obviously investigated all of this, because this is such a premier position for us,” said WICS executive news director Katie McManus-Faye. Station officials “pretty much decided … it was really a nonissue, and that the stories that were written, the things that were reported, turned out in the end not to be true,” she said.

DeMentri begins as the evening anchor at WICS next week. He replaces Jerry Lambert, who retired earlier this year.