KTNV-TV, Channel 13 terminated former anchor Ron Futrell today, a day after it was disclosed that he was in a hit-and-run accident over the weekend. Futrell confirmed that he was let go following a meeting with management, ending 24 years at the station.
Futrell, 52, was arrested Saturday for obstructing a police officer, unsafe lane change, hit and run with property damage, failing to give information or rendering aid and failing to report an accident.
He told Vegas Confidential that he had attended Team USA’s basketball game against Canada last Friday at Thomas & Mack Arena and went to Town Square for dinner at the Yardhouse before heading for his home in Summerlin.
He said the accident occurred near Interstate 15 and Charleston Boulevard about 11 p.m. Futrell said he continued on to the Spaghetti Bowl flyover because he was rattled after hitting his head so hard on the driver’s side window that the window “was completely busted out. I’m lucky to be alive.”
Futrell said he got a concussion from the contact with the window. He didn’t immediately stop, he said, because the flyover to U.S. 95 is “about the most dangerous place on the planet. There’s no space to pull over.”
He stopped at the Valley View exit, drove over to Sahara and returned to the scene but didn’t find anyone there.
“I thought it was a case of trading paint and I got the worst of it. I’m not sure if I caused the accident,” he said.
When he got home, police officers were at his door within a couple minutes.
When he opened the door, Futrell said a female cop said, “Oh, he’s the TV guy. We’ve got a TV guy here.”
They requested that he open the garage door and he complied. “They searched my car. I said, ‘you’re not supposed to be searching my car without permission.’ "
As far as the obstruction charge, Futrell said the female cop “had a note pad and kept handing it to me. I said I don’t remember, I’m not sure what happened. It was a rogue cop who wanted to get a TV guy.
“I was trying to cooperate but I couldn’t remember.”
Futrell recalls asking the officers to take him downtown to test him.
“I was cooperating 100 percent and I wanted to make sure there were no questions about drugs or alcohol so they would be clear on that. That was my main goal. At least I accomplished that.”
He was arrested and spent four to five hours in the Las Vegas city jail before being released on his own recognizance. Futrell has been on the board of Crime Stoppers for three years and emceed the annual awards luncheon for the last two years.
He was Channel 13’s sports director for most his 24 years at the station before moving to morning anchor five years ago. He was moved to a reporting position early last month.
— NORM CLARKE