Local News

TV Reporter Cited for Peeping

Posted April 18, 2008 1:05 p.m. EDT
Updated April 18, 2008 3:44 p.m. EDT

— A local TV reporter was cited Friday morning for allegedly peeping in an occupied premise.

Eric Ralph Watson, 34, of 201 Old Grove Lane in Apex, was charged with one count of secret peeping. He was arrested shortly after 6 a.m. in the Brittany Trace subdivision, about a mile from his home.

Apex Police Capt. Ann Stephens said a neighbor saw a man matching Watson's description Thursday afternoon on top of an air-conditioning unit peeping into the bathroom of a female neighbor.

The witness called police and alerted the residents who live at the house.

Early Friday morning, Stephens said, the woman's husband confronted a man believed to be Watson, who approached the house again. The husband called 911, and an Apex police officer arrested Watson nearby.

Stephens said Watson and the woman do not know each other but that they might have attended the same gym.

Watson, a reporter for NBC affiliate WNCN-TV in Raleigh, was released from police custody with a promise to appear in court. He has no prior record.

WNCN news director Nannette Wilson said in an e-mail that the station and its parent company, Media General, are conducting an internal investigation into this matter.

"We pledge to our community, our employees and to Mr. Watson to address this matter in a prompt, fair and responsible manner," she said.

In a statement posted on WNCN's Web site earlier Friday, Watson said he was "100 percent innocent" of the charge against him.

"I assure you all that I am outraged over this matter and plan to prove my innocence if it's the last thing I do on God's Earth," he said.