Local News in Brief : 2nd Witness Backs Up Phony Ratings Charge

A KDOC-TV worker testified Monday that she was ordered to use phony viewer ratings in the station's sales pitch, the second employee to state that former manager Michael Volpe ordered the misrepresentation.

The testimony was given in Superior Court by Linda Ford, a sales representative from 1983-85 for Orange County's only commercial television station.

Ford told jurors that Volpe also ordered her to lie about the fake ratings to directors, including Pat Boone. Ford testified that Volpe said: "There are different ways to tell the truth."

It was the third day of the trial in a case in which Steve Conobre said he was unfairly fired when he refused to follow Volpe's orders to use the phony sales pitch.

Last week, a traffic manager for KDOC, Leonard Bell, told jurors that he heard Volpe order the use of the misleading sales pitch.

"Hot Seat" talk-show host Wally George is scheduled to testify today. George, whose show airs on KDOC, allegedly pushed for Conobre's dismissal without cause.

Ford, who has also filed suit against the station, testified that all of her complaints went unnoticed until she sent letters by registered mail to the directors of Golden Orange Broadcasting Co. Inc., which runs the television station.

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