Rusty Gatenby out at KSTP following DWI arrest

Categories: Crime, Media
RustyGatenby300.jpg
Rusty Gatenby's lengthy tenure as a KSTP-TV reporter has come to an end.

Gatenby confirmed his departure in a Facebook post yesterday, writing, "well it's true.. after more than 30 years at KSTP I am moving on."

"I have nothing bad to say, in fact, I feel truly lucky for the amazing times I've had," he continued. "I challenge anyone to have had more fun at a job than I have. I hope to see you all again down the road. In the meantime, I'm going to take a long long nap."

SEE ALSO: KSTP broadcasts video of its own vehicle crashing

A South Lake Minnetonka police report obtained by City Pages indicates Gatenby, 53, was arrested for DWI around 1:30 in the morning on January 19. Pulled over for a traffic violation, his blood alcohol level was .134, the report says.

A South Lake Minnetonka PD employee told us the matter was passed on to the city prosecutor for possible charges. A voicemail left with the prosecutor seeking comment on whether charges have been filed hasn't been returned.

It's unclear what role, if any, Gatenby's arrest played in his departure from KSTP. Station officials have declined to discuss the matter with reporters.

Gatenby's criminal record doesn't indicate any prior drunk driving incidents, though he was convicted of fifth-degree assault and disorderly conduct in Carver County back in 1997.

Gatenby's departure comes just over two months after KSTP axed anchor Brad Sattin and meteorologist Patrick Hammer, and eight months after reporter Mark Saxenmeyer was shown the door for jokingly inserting an "inappropriate gay reference" into a story.

h/t -- C.J.

-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at arupar@citypages.com.

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210 comments
lestobb
lestobb

We have followed Rusty since he worked on the Steve Adleman show thru the traffic reports flying helicopters with Art into the recent present. Rusty was the reason we watched channel 5 every morning for the news. Patrick Hammer was also one of our favorites and  the two of them were a very desired team. Brad Satten will also be very hard for you to replace. It takes a BIG person or company to be there when a devoted and valuable employee makes a mistake and needs assistance. You, (KSTP) are not. IN the meantime we hope that you will step up to the plate and correct the situation that you have created, in the meantime we will be watching news elsewhere. Thankyou, Sad in Wisconsin

falcon_the
falcon_the

There's an old saying among Twin Cities broadcasters. "An optimist is person who works for Hubbard and brings his lunch." It is the number one rated turnstile.

falcon_the
falcon_the

There's an old saying among local broadcasters. An optimist is someone who works for Hubbard and brings his lunch. It's ranks as the number one turnstile.

rutheanderson
rutheanderson

Time to start a bring Rusty back campaign. Miss the humor. Life happens; everyone makes mistakes....

CannabisKid
CannabisKid

dam drunks ruining the country blaming cannabis for all of our problems, good riddance!

donna362
donna362

The reason I never watched that channel was because of Rusty.  I thought he was a son-in-law or brother-in-law.   I couldn't stand him.  

Dog Gone
Dog Gone topcommenter

I wish they would keep all three at KSTP -- Gatenby, Sattin and Hammer.

crseevers
crseevers

really really stupid to let these people go when they were the reason most of us watched.  again we see how stupid and out of touch management is.  Im switching to the cooking channel.

crseevers
crseevers

Well Im done with 45.  I watched from the beginning, and this round of firings has left me disgusted with that channel.  I wont be watching Meghans smiling face anymore.  What about Katie and Matt getting back together.  KSTC....you re so stupid to do this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Vicki Miller
Vicki Miller

It's not fair in my opinion, to fire an employee for an unconvicted DWI. Yes, all evidence points to it, but other employees drink. Funny how a previous anchor for WCCO (1980's), could be seen many nights drunk wandering from bar to bar in DT Mpls. A leave of absence to seek rehab would have been more in line, especially with no documented history of arrest. Would have sent a better message.

walkec50
walkec50

To fire him is a bit drastic, don't you think?  He doesn't drive for a living.  I understand the whole DUI thing, I really do. But firing him was a bit overboard.   

Kat Coats
Kat Coats

Haha!! Nope, agnostic over here buddy. he knew the consequences before he signed on to work for them. So bam!

David Lloyd
David Lloyd

No second chances. Fuck up once and your done. Regardless of how much you've given. You lack both grace and empathy Kat and Nick. You must be christians.

CinderSue
CinderSue

And lets just ask any exec's at the station if they ever had a cocktail and got behind the wheel-if that is their reason for termination-shame on them-he's human he made a mistake-People need to clean off their own door step first before they come down on someone else-I

Anita Reinitz
Anita Reinitz

Why are people so stupid and drive when they have been drinking? Just amazes me. A month ago a woman almost hit me. She blew a red light and was passed out cold at 4 in the afternoon. GROW UP people and be responsible before you kill someone. Not KSTP's fault. He needs to realize his actions probably attributed to his demise at the station. Too much bad publicity when you do that type of stuff. He is in the public eye. Hope this was a lesson for him to take a different approach in life. He had another issue in 1997 where he got in trouble.

Michael Paulson
Michael Paulson

Really? For being human and making a mistake? Way to go Twin Cities!

Ginny LaHaye
Ginny LaHaye

I liked Rusty- bad decision to let him go.

Wini Von Bago Johnson
Wini Von Bago Johnson

Are you kidding me? A dwi arrest? this is minnesota and seriously if that was all it was then someone had made a mistake. EVERYONE drinks here. what did he do, come to a rolling stop and got in trouble? bleh, big deal so what. its not like he's a maniac behind the wheel. Hubbard should hire Jesus, then they can call walking on water and pass yet another ridiculous tethering to yet another employee. I dont watch KSTPee anyway. its lame.

dtfis99
dtfis99

Will definitely be finding another channel in the a.m.

So sad--best wishes to you Rusty!!

Theresa Stewart
Theresa Stewart

will be exciting to see what his next chapter will be

Dale Karels
Dale Karels

Corporate America is getting more fucked by the day

hagej02
hagej02

It really sucks if, in fact, he was fired for a DWI. Everyone can have a rough patch...BUT there could be more to the story.

Suzanne Theis
Suzanne Theis

That guy could drink! Seen him out and about a couple of times 3 sheets to the wind!! But I never saw him drive away from those bars.

Matthew Roscoe
Matthew Roscoe

as like any story, we don't know the WHOLE story. Maybe the guy has a problem and the station has stood by him for a long time and this was the final straw. On the other hand, if it was a slip up the I'm disappointed in the stations lack of support and compassion for an employee who has most like given more TO the station than what he has gotten back FROM the station.

Sara Beth
Sara Beth

That's dumb. A dwi can happen to so many people even if they feel sober enough to drive. He shouldn't lose his job.

Carla Thiel Mandrell
Carla Thiel Mandrell

so sad....this guy is awesome...he gave me a ride back to the studio once when we did a superbowl recording for steve and sharon's show good company...way back when! great guy, yes big time their loss!!

MNjoe
MNjoe topcommenter

You have to deep down be a pretty stupid motherfucker to get in your car and drive after drinking. Anyone who wants to defend it, go tell it to the friends and family of the guy killed last night on Franklin Ave. The state should take your car on the first offense. Second offense, a slug to the back of the head. Call a friend, call a cab or start walking.

MNjoe
MNjoe topcommenter

@crseevers Speaking of stupid - how about taking a remedial English course?

falcon_the
falcon_the

That would be dapper Don Shelby.

ajlalk3
ajlalk3 topcommenter

KSTPee. Wow, with lines like that one, YOU should be the new host of The Tonight Show.

Dog Gone
Dog Gone topcommenter

Hope another local station hires him quick.

He deserves the benefit of the doubt until convicted, and if he had a problem he deserves the chance to do something constructive about it.

There are consequences, and then there are excessive consequences.

ajlalk3
ajlalk3 topcommenter

You do realize KSTP is owned by Hubbard Broadcasting, a private, family owned company, right? Hardly "Corporate America".

Dog Gone
Dog Gone topcommenter

@hagej02 Good point, although it does seem to be part of a larger house cleaning, where the others shown the door didn't have any reason for it.

TweetsAreYours
TweetsAreYours

@hagej02 i'd bet $10,000 there's more to the story, but too many simple-minded rubes want to assume that he was fired simply for a DUI arrest.

ajlalk3
ajlalk3 topcommenter

Let me guess Sara, you have whiskey plates on your car.

midwestexplorer81
midwestexplorer81

@MNjoe There's a difference between having three beers over an hour or two dinner at a restaurant and getting blacked out wasted and ramming your vehicle into things like the dumb ass on Franklin Avenue. If you want to put slugs in people for their second DUI you'll probably be killing many of your coworkers and maybe some of your family too. 1 in every 7 Minnesota drivers has a DUI. Until there is a major culture shift such as getting rid of parking lots outside of bars it will continue. Two beers, two beers and you could get a DUI. Not everyone with a DUI is a raging drunk. Ok you can insert your angry comeback rant now saying how horrible I am. LOL

Dog Gone
Dog Gone topcommenter

@ajlalk3   Still corporate America, whether family owned corporation or not. You have a false definition of corporate.

Dave2
Dave2

@TweetsAreYours @hagej02  

You don't suppose that maybe Gatenby and Hammer were closet Democrats do you? Stanely Hubbard wouldn't like that.

MNjoe
MNjoe topcommenter

@midwestexplorer81 @MNjoe  Sure there's a difference but you have to draw the line somewhere.  Rusty blew a .134 which seems a few beers over the .08 limit.  It only takes a momentary lapse to do some horrific damage in a car. It's not worth it and shouldn't be tolerated.  Bar parking lots should be for employees and designated drivers only.  I'm betting Rusty could afford a cab home. I'm exaggerating (slighly) about the slug to the head but penalties need to be ramped up so that most people wouldn't even consider getting behind the wheel after drinking. I love to go out drinking downtown - but I leave the car at home and either walk home, take a bus or take a cab. It's not difficult.

Dog Gone
Dog Gone topcommenter

@MNjoe @midwestexplorer81MNjoe, yes. You are right about the damage someone can do while drunk.

We have the technology -- so why don't we have a breathalyzer in every bar, so people can actually CHECK their limit before leaving - or before being over-served rather than hoping the bar tender or server guesses correctly? And/or in all cars, not just those of chronic drunk drivers?

The day is coming when cars will have the capability of driving themselves (giving a new meaning to 'auto' auto).  I hope that tech will eventually provide every vehicle with a built in designated driver equivalent in the foreseeable future.

Something to look forward to?

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