Home Miami TV WPTV Runs Into Former Colleague During Investigation

WPTV Runs Into Former Colleague During Investigation

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contact5.investigators.logoWhat are the odds of something like this happening?!

During an investigation into a time share company accused of taking people’s money and running, WPTV’s Shannon Cake and photogs ran into a familiar face to them and many others who’ve watched WPTV for years.

As the crew staked out the offices of Premier Time Share a former colleague was seen frequently coming and going. It was former morning meteorologist Rob Lopicola! Allegedly a manager at the firm WPTV’s investigation targeted.

WPTV reporter Shannon Cake and two photogs confronted Lopicola one morning as he walked toward the office building and asked him why hundreds of people complained the time share company took their refundable deposits and never returned them. He told them they only ask for fees to advertise the customer’s time share

Shannon Cake asked Lopicola if she could go up to the office with him and talk to one happy, satisfied client of theirs. Lopicola told her he would instead go and get his boss and come backĀ  in a few minutes. The crew ended up waiting for him for over an hour but he didn’t return.

According to WPTV’s investigation, customers are accusing Premier Time Share of promising to sell their time shares in exchange for a refundable fee. A former employee told WPTV there never is a buyer for the time share. The former employee claims company management told them the units will never be sold and that “…these people are going to give you their money … if they are stupid enough to give it we’re going to take it”.

Video of WPTV’s story after the jump

/hat tip gbmiami87 and tipsters/

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21 COMMENTS

  1. How sad that people fall for this and people take advantage of them.

    This is something that shows that media is not bad as people say, despite the buget cuts and whatnot.

    • Shannon Cake is a fantastic reporter. i’m not a big fan of her anchoring style but as a reporter she’s one of the very best. All her investigative stories are excellent, although the subject matter can be dull at times. She’s one lady who doesnt seem to let up on a story until she has made a difference.

      Interestingly she used to be the weekend morning anchor when Rob Lopicola was the weekend morning meteorologist. He probably thought “oh s###” when he saw her walk toward him. what a douche! the guy’s a liability to himself. god knows what he’s mixed up in. He’s been in freefall for years.

  2. Good analysis LL. Shannon’s top notch on reporting and just a down right good person generally. But her anchoring style is not up to scratch, which is a real shame. She’s one of those who has earned the right to sit behind the desk and I find myself rooting for her…I really WANT her to do better because she works so hard. She should move on to be a network reporter. She’s good enough and needs to understand her reporting skills are far more valuable than clinging to the desk. As for Lopicola, he was bad news from the start. His dodgy dealings of late are the tip of the iceberg.

    • Shannon won’t move to network. She’s settled in the area with her family – definitely she’s good enough though. Some of her pieces have been absolutely outstanding for a mid-market station (she has a terrific photog working with her – Jim Sitton – also talented enough for a market much higher imo). She’d be a major loss to WPTV if she ever went. Her stories are what makes the station stand-out from the rest in the area.
      She improves all the time as an anchor I just wish she’d keep still. Perhaps it’s a confidence issue. she’s a sweetheart so I feel bad criticizing.

      Rob is reckless and he cries homphobia. No Rob… you just act like a jerk at times.

      • Shannon would be great at like WFOR ow WTVJ where she would be footsteps away from network. Networks always pull some of the good people at O&Os to do network stuff temporary. That could be a good idea for her to consider one day, especially if she wants to stay here. In fact, WTVJ could use some like her.

        • You want Shannon to go to a trainwreck station like WTVJ?

          If she had the drive to go to a larger market she’d have gone by now.

          • I was merely pointing out the fact that some O&O markets could use her skills. I didn’t say I wanted her to move.

            I am aware that she is probably not interested because she is still here, and after all, Palm Beach County is my vision of hell.

          • I wouldn’t wish WTVJ on anybody
            I like PBC. I think it depends on your lifestyle. It suits mine. (I’m boring)

  3. I agree about Shannon Cake, she is one of few I like at WPTV, and a reason to watch.

    WPTV is sneaky, I have seen them hide to get a story before and quickly run out to catch a person.

  4. Contact 5, that is. Brosemer did some investigative stuff, as did Tiffany. All with the mighty Sitton (and Muriel).

    • Sitton has serious skills. I guess like with Cake he decided he wanted to settle and nevermind about advancing to larger markets or network.

  5. It depends on what department you want to work at WTVJ. For reporters, producers, writers, it may not be the best move but for other positions it’s still the best place. For example, the photographer’s shop there is a good one. They have the latest and get paid almost double of all the other stations. The good thing for them is that the new news director was a photog once.

  6. WPTV, ironically knew what a shmuck Rob Lopicola was when he worked at the station, and which is why he was forced out. He is egotistical, arrogant, preys on young guys, and thinks his sh*t don’t stink. keep up the good work exposing this loser

    • He was kinda full of himself thought he was all that and extra. I should know I went to high school with him. he graduated in 88 and myself in 89. On Long Island New York.

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