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McCoy: Appeals court must hear racial discrimination suit against AT&T, DISH Network

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Circle City Broadcasting, which owns WISH-TV and WNDY, wants a federal appeals court to reinstate its racial discrimination lawsuits against AT&T and DISH Network.

Attorneys for the company and DuJuan McCoy, Owner, President and CEO of Circle City Broadcasting, filed the formal notice of appeal in federal court in Indianapolis on Tuesday.

Legendary civil rights attorney Cyrus Mehri will lead the appeal with Indianapolis law firm Bose McKinney & Evans LLP.

McCoy vowed the fight against the two companies would continue after a federal judge issued summary judgment in the cases March 31.

McCoy sued AT&T and DISH Network in 2020, accusing the companies of racial discrimination for refusing to negotiate retransmission contracts for WISH-TV and WNDY. 

DuJuan McCoy, Owner, President and CEO of Circle City Broadcasting

“I have always known as one of the few black media executives in America that the fight for equality in media is always going to be difficult,” McCoy said after Judge Tanya Walton Pratt’s ruling. “We firmly believe that DISH and AT&T are both discriminatory companies in contracting. Separately and individually, they discriminate!”

Judge Pratt rejected a DISH request to seal 17 words from her ruling that Circle City claimed “DISH refused to contract with it for the payment of fees for that right, for the longest time offering zero dollars, and at the eleventh hour offering only pennies per subscriber.