Jaco was born August 21, 1950 in Poplar Bluff, Missouri.
He worked for NBC Network Radio from 1979 until 1988. In 1987, he was badly beaten by the security forces of Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega. In late 1988, he became a correspondent for CNN. In 1989 while covering allegations of electoral fraud by the Panamanian government, Jaco was visited by vigilantes of Noriega. He fled the country with the aid of the U.S. military. While covering the Gulf War for CNN in 1991, he proposed to fellow CNN correspondent Pat Neal. He left CNN in 1994 and joined KMOX.
He authored Dead Air, a novel about the Gulf War, and Live Shot, a novel set in Cuba. In 2002, he authored The Complete Idiot's Guide to the Gulf War, and in 2003 co-authored The Complete Idiot's Guide to the Politics of Oil. In 2003 he became a reporter and anchor for KTVI television in St. Louis, Missouri, while hosting the station's The Jaco Report. In 2009, he began work at the radio station KTRS 550, doing a daily morning talk show, also titled The Jaco Report. In February 2010 Jaco allegedly bumped into conservative blogger Adam Sharp. Based on Sharp's video of the encounter, the city prosecutor declined to pursue charges against Jaco.
In October 2010, Jaco was replaced by J.C. Corcoran at KTRS. In August 2013 Jaco interviewed U.S. Representative Todd Akin on The Jaco Report in which Akin controversially claimed that women rarely become pregnant from "legitimate rape." Jaco left KTVI in 2014.
- "Charles Jaco". Fox2 St. Louis. September 14, 2006. Archived from the original on February 4, 2010. Retrieved January 20, 2010.
- Salter, Jim (April 20, 1995). "Jaco Goes Home to Talk Radio". Chicago Sun-Times.
- Shanor, Donald (2003). News From Abroad. p. 120. ISBN 0-231-12240-3. Retrieved 7 January 2016.
- Kubasik, Ben (April 3, 1991). "UNEXPECTED FAME FOR ARTHUR KENT AND CHARLES JACO The News Guys on the Block". Newsday. p. 55.
- Garrison, Chad (3 March 2010). "Charges Dropped Against Charles Jaco Following Dust Up with 'Tea Bagger'". Retrieved 7 January 2016.
Based on the 'evidence' presented, I saw no basis for proceeding with the charge
- Garrison, Chad (6 October 2010). "Used Condoms Can't Keep Charles Jaco Off Air, but KTRS Can; Jaco Replaced by JC Corcoran". The Riverfront Times. Retrieved 7 January 2016.
- Hoyt, Mike (23 August 2012). "Backstory: the reporter who interviewed Akin". Columbia Journalism Review. Retrieved 7 January 2016.
- Currier, Joel (28 February 2016). "KTVI's Charles Jaco leaving the news station". St. Louis Post Dispatch. Retrieved 7 January 2016.