Radio Hosts Suspended for Remarks about Houston

The afternoon radio team of John and Ken, John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou, have been suspended by KFI-am 640 for remarks they made about Whitney Houston.

By Jesse Gary and Julie Brayton
|  Friday, Feb 17, 2012  |  Updated 6:25 AM PDT
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The afternoon radio team of John and Ken, John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou, have been suspended by KFI-am 640 for remarks they made about Whitney Houston.

Jesse Gary, David Gregory

The afternoon radio team of John and Ken, John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou, have been suspended by KFI-am 640 for remarks they made about Whitney Houston.

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KFI AM 640 has suspended John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou, the hosts of the "John and Ken Show," for "making insensitive and inappropriate comments about the late Whitney Houston," according to a statement released by the station Thursday.

"Management does not condone, support or tolerate statements of this kind," the statement read.

According to audio posted online at UrbanInformer.com, the hosts called the late singer a "crack ho" and said she was "cracked out for 20 years."

That rhetoric hit a nerve with some watchdog groups.

"It is vulgar. It is down right ugly. There is no place for something like This on our airwaves," said Alex Nogales, president of the National Hispanic Media Coalition.

Kobylt said in statement that he and Chiampou "used language that was inappropriate" and they "sincerely apologize" to their listeners and to Houston's family.

"We made a mistake, and we accept the station's decision," Kobylt said.

The hosts, who broadcast their show weekday afternoons, will return to the airwaves Feb. 27.

Kobylt and Chiampou often rail against taxes and illegal immigration. The National Hispanic Media Coalition said last year that it targeted the show's advertisers to urge them to stop backing the program.

The group said the hosts promote hate speech and appealed to listeners to call and harass an advocate for immigrant rights about state legislation to give financial aid to illegal immigrant college students.

"A temporary suspension is not enough," Nogales wrote in a statement. "How many times do John and Ken get to spew their hate, apologize and then do it again after taking off a long weekend? KFI must permanently remove John and Ken from the air. Los Angeles deserves better."

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