Matt Lauer, the longstanding host of The Today Show has been terminated today due to allegations of sexual misconduct.
NBC announced that an unnamed colleague of Lauer’s reported him for “Inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace.”
His co-anchor Savannah Gunthrie had to announce the news to their audience this morning live on the show.
“We are heartbroken,” Gunthrie said while holding back tears. Gunthrie claimed that she and her co-workers only knew as much as the rest of the world knows about the scandal, but they will be following the story.
Ari Wilkenfeld, a civil rights lawyer is representing the woman who made the complaint to NBC. Wikenfeld said that “NBC acted quickly, as all companies should, when confronted with credible allegations of sexual misconduct in the workplace.”
This is not the only allegations towards Lauer. One former employee told The New York Times that Lauer “summoned her to his office in 2001 and then had sex with her.” She went on to say that she felt “helpless” and “ashamed,” and she was afraid to lose her job, so she did not report the incident.
Variety did a two-month investigation on Lauer and interviewed three women who claim that they are victims of Lauer’s sexual misconduct. Although they did not wish to be named, they did share some of their experiences.
According to one of the women, Lauer “summoned” his female employee up to his office and dropped his pants, exposing his penis. When the woman refused to do anything with him, Lauer “reprimanded her for not engaging in a sexual act.”
Another woman Variety spoke with said that Lauer once gave a colleague a sex toy as a present. With his present, he included a note about “how he wanted to use it on her.”
Variety goes on to claim that according to their numerous sources, Lauer’s behavior was not unbeknownst to Lauer’s co-workers at Today. “They protected the s— out of Matt Lauer,” a former host for the Today Show told Variety.