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Award-winning broadcast journalist Sarah Wallace sues former employer, WABC

Sarah Wallace attends the 50th Annual New York

Sarah Wallace attends the 50th Annual New York Emmy Awards Gala on April 1, 2007 in New York City. Credit: Getty Images / Bryan Bedder

Emmy- and Peabody award-winning broadcast journalist Sarah Wallace, who abruptly parted ways with WABC/7 Eyewitness News in February after more than 30 years, is suing her former station for allegedly paying her "significantly less" than male reporters of equal or less tenure, responsibility and accomplishment.

In a filing Monday with state Supreme Court in Manhattan, Wallace, 59, asks for at least $200,000 plus punitive damages for violations of the Federal Equal Pay, New York Labor Law and both New York City and state human-rights laws.

"We'll be putting details in a full complaint that we'll file later," her attorney, Joe Tacopina, told Newsday yesterday.

Wallace, who signed on to WNBC/4 earlier this month, "was hoping it would not come to this," Tacopina added, "but some of the statements made by Channel 7 managers were so derogatory and offensive, she could not allow them to go unchecked."

Wallace, who has 15 Emmy Awards, among other accolades, is known for numerous memorable stories, including a one-on-one prison interview with child-killer Joel Steinberg.

A WABC representative could not be reached for comment.

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