Matt Lauer propositioned and exposed himself to a “As we speak” show producer — who then “melted in ache” recalling the sickening conduct to Ann Curry, a brand new ebook alleges.
Melissa Lonner, the NBC show’s then-entertainment booker, confided in Curry, Lauer’s co-host on the time, in regards to the horrific incident in 2010, in accordance to Ronan Farrow’s new tome “Catch and Kill.”
Farrow wrote that he met with Curry, and her face was “graven with concern” as she advised him a couple of settlement NBC had made with a lady who disclosed a severe allegation about Lauer.
“She advised me that complaints about Lauer verbally harassing girls within the workplace have been well-known in her day — and that after, in 2010, a colleague had pulled her into an empty workplace and damaged down, saying Lauer had exposed himself and propositioned her,” Farrow writes.
The journalist says Curry advised him, “It was as shut as you may get to a girls simply melting in entrance of you in ache.”
Later, he found the girl’s identification: Lonner, the ebook says.
Lonner advised colleagues that on the time, Lauer had requested her to go away a piece occasion, the place each had been at NBC headquarters at 30 Rockefeller Heart in Manhattan, to be a part of him within the workplace, in accordance to “Catch and Kill.”
Though Lonner thought it could be knowledgeable assembly, Lauer closed the door, and as he made small discuss in regards to the cocktail occasion that they had simply attended, “he unzipped his pants and exposed his erect penis,” the ebook says.
Lonner, then separated from her husband, laughed and tried to get out of his workplace by joking she didn’t need to be intimate in a spot “the place everybody else has executed it,” Farrow writes.
However Lauer advised her that “he knew that she needed it,” the ebook says.
In response to her joke about his workplace affairs, Lauer allegedly responded that he “figured she preferred it soiled” and that the encounter could be “first for you.”
Then, she stated, he acquired indignant, telling her, “Melissa, you’re a f–king tease. This isn't good. You led me on,” the ebook says.
Sources shut to Lauer disputed Lonner’s occasions to Farrow within the ebook, saying he solely recalled making a joking lewd gesture.
However the ebook says Lonner was constant as she advised the identical story within the years after.
She by no means went to higher-ups herself, and Lonner begged Curry and one other on-air character accustomed to her story not to reveal her identify to execs in the event that they did, saying Lauer would destroy her profession, in accordance to the tome.
However Curry did inform two senior executives, whom she has declined to identify, that they wanted to do one thing about Lauer, the ebook says.
Curry advised Farrow, “I advised them that that they had an issue in him. That he had an issue with girls. That that they had to keep watch over him,” he writes.
Lonner tried to discover one other job at one level, touchdown a suggestion at CNN, the ebook says. However NBC execs advised her that Lauer was insisting she keep, Farrow writes.
Then in 2013, she was fired allegedly with out cause earlier than her contract was up. She consulted a lawyer, who advised her the statute of limitations prevented her from making a harassment declare, the ebook says.
Afterward, she was bizarrely provided a six-figure sum by NBC in alternate for signing a “launch of rights,” and she or he later advised mates she believed it was to preserve her from speaking to the press, “Catch and Kill” says. She signed the settlement.
Information gadgets then started rising saying Lonner had been extraordinarily troublesome to work with.
Lonner was unable to focus on her time at NBC immediately with Farrow due to the parting settlement she signed with NBC. The community disputed that her payout was associated to the Lauer incident.
Lonner couldn't be reached for remark Monday.
NBC Information President Noah Oppenheim hit again at Curry on Monday for her function in the entire ordeal, saying in a memo to staffers: “By her personal account, Curry relayed no particular criticism, nor did she say Lauer’s ‘drawback’ regarded any particular office misconduct.
“NBC [Universal] was ready to converse with a kind of former executives throughout the 2018 evaluate and she or he denied having been advised even this. On the time of the worker’s exit, three years later, she nonetheless had made no criticism about Lauer, was paid 22 weeks of severance primarily based on her years of service, and was requested to signal a separation settlement that was normal for departing staff on the time.
“The usual separation settlement included a routine confidentiality clause that was designed to defend proprietary firm info. It was not drafted to forestall an worker from reporting misconduct, and it has by no means been used that method.”