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KNSD San Diego Enhances Investigative Unit

The NBC-owned station dedicates Mari Payton and Wendy Fry to full-time investigative work.

NBC-owned KNSD San Diego today announced that it will be enhancing its “I-Team” investigative reporting unit by dedicating two additional full-time staffers, Mari Payton as lead reporter and Wendy Fry as producer.

Payton currently works on investigative pieces part-time along with her midday anchor duties and Fry works on the assignment desk. With the additional allocation of resources to investigative journalism, Christine Haas, currently anchoring the 4 and 5 p.m. newscasts, will expand her anchor duties to include the midday newscast.

“While we’ve done some great enterprise work, we’re excited to dedicate even more resources and attention to the investigative beat, with Mari and Wendy now also focusing full-time on this important work in addition to the existing members of our I-Team,” said Greg Dawson, KNSD VP of news. “We expect this shift in duties for both Mari and Wendy to be a game-changer for the I-Team’s work and look forward to the positive impact they will make in the San Diego community.”

Two of Payton’s past investigations, A Prescription for Pot and Car Buyers Beware have earned Emmy Awards. Additionally, Payton’s recent investigation into a local university revealed that the school was operating fraudulently without a license. The KNSD story led to the State of California forcing the school to close in March 2013 and prompted an investigation by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

In addition to Payton and Fry, the NBC 7 I-Team includes Senior Special Projects Producer Paul Krueger and Photographer Adam White. Other reporters and anchors also conduct investigations in conjunction with the I-Team as duties allow. Payton will continue to be a fill-in anchor from time to time as schedules dictate.

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