It appears as though the fallout has just begun for disgraced NBC “Today” show host Matt Lauer after he was fired from his job amid allegations of sexual harassment. According to news reports Thursday, NBC has received at least two additional complaints of Lauer’s inappropriate behavior.
The New York Times reports that one of the new allegations comes from a female former NBC employee who alleges that in 2001, Lauer summoned her to his office, locked the door by pressing a button at his desk, and sexually assaulted her.
The woman told the Times that she passed out with her pants pulled down and had to be taken to a nurse after waking up on the floor of Lauer’s office.
The woman, who came forward with her story after the news broke of Lauer’s firing, did not report the incident at the time; she said this was because she felt helpless and concerned for her career. She also said she was ashamed of the encounter.
Though the woman did not formally report the incident at the time, she shared details with her then-husband and a friend, both of whom confirmed the story
In a memo to staff Wednesday, NBC News chairman Andrew Lack stated that the network had reason to believe that more inappropriate conduct might be uncovered.
“On Monday night, we received a detailed complaint from a colleague about inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace by Matt Lauer,” Lack said in a memo to the staff. “While it is the first complaint about his behavior in the over 20 years he’s been at NBC News, we were also presented with reason to believe this may not have been an isolated incident.”
Variety reported Wednesday that previous complaints against Lauer were ignored by the network. Women “complained to executives at the network about Lauer’s behavior, which fell on deaf ears given the lucrative advertising surrounding ‘Today,'” the report said.
Lauer had been with the “Today” show since 1994.
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