Fired WUTC reporter amends lawsuit, names UTC Chancellor - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Fired WUTC reporter amends lawsuit, names UTC Chancellor

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Jacqui Helbert speaks to a group of students that gathered to protest the firing of Helbert, a former reporter for a WUTC-FM radio station at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. Photo by Dan Henry /Times Free Press Jacqui Helbert speaks to a group of students that gathered to protest the firing of Helbert, a former reporter for a WUTC-FM radio station at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. Photo by Dan Henry /Times Free Press

CHATTANOOGA (AP) - The public radio reporter fired by the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga has amended her lawsuit against the school, adding Chancellor Steven Angle as an individual defendant.

Chattanooga Times Free Press reports (http://bit.ly/2qdQF9v ) Jacqui Helbert says university administrators fired her to appease Republican state lawmakers who complained she didn't properly identify herself while reporting on a story in March about Tennessee's transgender bathroom bill.

Helbert maintains she was wearing a press badge and carrying bulky equipment. NPR officials say Helbert shouldn't have been fired and have urged the school and WUTC to reach an agreement ensuring the station's editorial independence.

The amended lawsuit filed Tuesday cites emails from administrators calling for the firing and says they show a lack of regard for the free press. University spokesman Chuck Cantrell declined to comment.

Information from: Chattanooga Times Free Press, http://www.timesfreepress.com

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