News Director / Anchorman for New York NBC affiliate caught in sex predator sting

Says he was targeted because he is gay

Zack Wheeler is the recently fired anchorman and News Director for WETM Channel 18. This is the Elmira, New York NBC affiliate. He was fired after being caught in a Chris Hansen-style sex predator sting. Wheeler allegedly went to a Dick’s Sporting Goods store to meet a 15-year-old boy for sex. When confronted, he accused the predator catchers of targeting “gays and lesbians.”

Wheeler was an on air personality since at least 2018 and was listed as the station’s News Director in February 2022.

The station is being heavily criticized for not addressing the situation on the air or even on its official website. In 2019, WETM published a video showcasing Zack Wheeler as one of the key people at the station. On Facebook, they responded to critics by downplaying him as merely “an employee.”

607 Predator Hunters operated the sting. The same group previously caught a “community development” manager for Facebook.

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