Matt Lauer’s wife Annette Roque has left their marital home amid allegations of sexual harassment against the former Today host, the New York Post’s Page Six reports.
A story published on Saturday, December 2, claimed that Roque has left the United States with the couple’s two youngest children, Romy, 14, and Thijs, 11, and has gone back to her native Netherlands to be with family. The couple also share son Jack, 16.
As previously reported, Lauer, 59, was fired by NBC after the network received a detailed complaint from a colleague alleging that the host engaged in inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace.
In an email sent out by NBC News chairman Andrew Lack in the early hours of Wednesday, November 29, Lack explained that the complaint represented a clear violation of company standards.
“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. Our highest priority is to create a workplace environment where everyone feels safe and protected and to ensure that any actions that run counter to our core values are met with consequences, no matter who the offender,” the email stated. “We are deeply saddened by this turn of events.”
Several women subsequently came forward to accuse Lauer of sexual harassment that ranged from gifting one with a sex toy to dropping his pants and exposing himself. The disgraced morning host apologized in a statement to Us Weekly on Thursday, November 30, saying, “There are no words to express my sorrow and regret for the pain I have caused others by words and actions. To the people I have hurt, I am truly sorry.”
While Roque has remained silent since news of the allegations broke, Lauer’s ex-wife, Nancy Alspaugh defended his character on Thursday.
“He’s been the best person that’s ever held that job and I couldn’t imagine that anything that he would have done — that would have been so out of character for him — that would have caused that reaction,” she told Entertainment Tonight. “I never saw him as a power monger or somebody who would abuse his position in any way.”
This is not the first sign of marital strife in Roque and Lauer’s relationship: she briefly filed for divorce in 2006, claiming Lauer was controlling and cruel, before withdrawing the filing a month later.
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