Ann Curry showed her support for Brooke Nevils after she accused Matt Lauer of sexual assault.
“Brooke Nevils is a credible young woman of good character. She came to NBC News an eager and guileless 20-something, brimming with talent,” Curry, 62, tweeted on Wednesday, October 9. “I believe she is telling the truth. And that breaks my heart.”
Nevils, who worked as former Today co-host Meredith Vieira’s assistant, claimed that Lauer, 61, raped her in his hotel room in Sochi, Russia, in 2014. She detailed the allegations in Ronan Farrow’s upcoming book, Catch and Kill.
“It was nonconsensual in the sense that I was too drunk to consent,” Nevils, 32, told Farrow, 31, in the book, which will be released on Tuesday, October 15. “It was nonconsensual in that I said, multiple times, that I didn’t want to have anal sex.”
Lauer, meanwhile, claimed that their encounter was consensual.
“It began when she came to my hotel room very late one night in Sochi, Russia. We engaged in a variety of sexual acts. We performed oral sex on each other, we had vaginal sex, and we had anal sex. Each act was mutual and completely consensual,” the disgraced host wrote in a letter to Variety on Wednesday. “The story Brooke tells is filled with false details intended only to create the impression this was an abusive encounter. Nothing could be further from the truth.”
Lauer and Curry co-anchored Today from 2011 to 2012. Curry was visibly emotional when she announced her exit from the morning show amid reports that tension with Lauer played a role in her departure. She left NBC News after 25 years in January 2015.
Lauer, for his part, was fired in November 2017 after several allegations of sexual misconduct surfaced. Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb, who announced his firing live on air at the time, addressed Nevils’ allegations during Wednesday’s broadcast.
“I know it wasn’t easy for our colleague Brooke to come forward then, it’s not easy now, and we support her and any women who have come forward with claims,” Guthrie said. “It’s just very painful for all of us at NBC and at the Today show. It’s very, very, very difficult.”
Kotb revealed that she and Guthrie “did a little prayer upstairs” before they started the show.
“You feel like you’ve known someone for 12 years … and then all of a sudden, a door opens up and it’s a part of them you didn’t know,” Kotb said. “We don’t know all the facts in all of this, but they’re not allegations of an affair; they’re allegations of a crime. I think that’s shocking to all of us here who’ve sat with Matt for many, many years. So, I think we’re gonna just continue to process this part of this horrific story.”
After the network cut ties with Lauer, Curry revealed she reported him for sexual harassment on behalf of a colleague in 2012.
Amid the controversy, Lauer and his wife, Annette Roque, separated after more than 20 years together. The exes, who share children Jack, 18, Romy, 16, and Thijs, 12, finalized their divorce last month.
If you or anyone you know has been sexually assaulted, call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673). A trained staff member will provide confidential, judgment-free support as well as local resources to assist in healing, recovering and more.
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