Local public-access television operators thought they were airing a show about a boxing match during prime time Friday night. But instead viewers saw a porn movie.
A mislabeled tape submitted by a regular contributing producer, Gary Ashby, caused Charter Communications to pull the station off the air for 12 hours.
Ashby told members of the Cable Access Television Board on Tuesday he was very sorry the tape appeared, and that he didn't know how his tape could have been switched with a porn tape.
"I take full responsibility for the tape," Ashby told board members. "I don't know how, but someone got my tape and recorded over it or replaced one of my tapes."
Ashby was placed on three months' probation by the board and instructed to turn in a written report on his investigation into where the porn tape came from. In addition, station personnel will review Ashby's tapes.
"He was very contrite," said board president Tom Baker. "He said someone had gotten into his tapes."
Judging from the label on the tape Ashby turned in, station workers expected to show viewers one of his regular boxing productions, said technical operations director Patrick Dixon. They loaded it into the machine and left for the night.
Station officials didn't realize what happened until the next morning, after the station was pulled off the air by Charter Communications.
"Our operating rules and procedures do not allow us to preview tapes," Dixon said. "We are required to play it. It played, and apparently it was some kind of mix-up and mistake."