Cuomo was ousted in December after revelations that he offered to use his position to help manage a sexual harassment scandal surrounding his brother, former Democrat Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York. Emails and texts revealed that Chris asked one of Andrew’s aides to “let me help with the prep,” and offered to contact other media outlets in hopes of ferreting out word of new allegations.
CNN said at the time that Cuomo’s actions were in violation of the network’s journalistic standards, but also referenced unspecified “additional information [that] has come to light” over the course of their internal investigation. The Times reported Tuesday that attorney Debra Katz sent CNN a letter on behalf of an unidentified accuser she was representing.
Katz “relayed a story that had begun in 2011 when the woman, who was referred to as Jane Doe, was a young temporary ABC employee hoping for a full-time job. One day, after Mr. Cuomo, an anchor, had offered her career advice, he invited her to lunch in his office, according to the letter, interviews with the woman and emails between her and Mr. Cuomo. When she arrived, there was no food. Instead, Mr. Cuomo badgered her for sex, and after she declined, he assaulted her, she said. She ran out of the room.”
Jane Doe allegedly tried to “smooth things over” with Cuomo via email in hopes of career advancement, and told “five friends and former colleagues” about “unwelcome sexual requests” from Cuomo but did not tell the assault story until last year.
Cuomo went on to contact Doe “seemingly out of the blue” amid the #MeToo wave of sexual misconduct claims against against powerful figures in various fields, Katz continued, and “proposed arranging a CNN segment about the company where she worked doing public relations. The woman tried to avoid any contact with Mr. Cuomo, but CNN ultimately broadcast a segment anyway.”
“After years without any substantive communication from Mr. Cuomo whatsoever, Ms. Doe suspected he was concerned about her coming forward publicly with her allegations and wanted to use the proposed segment as an opportunity to ‘test the waters’ and discourage her from going on the record about his sexual misconduct,” Katz wrote, explaining that her client did not want to become “a pawn in an internecine war between Zucker, Chris Cuomo and CNN.”
In response, a Cuomo spokesperson told Fox News that the letter’s claims “are false. He was never asked about the allegations prior to being terminated or given an opportunity to respond to the allegations.”
Throughout his tenure at CNN, Cuomo solidified a reputation as a far-left voice, from advocating the “deprogramm[ing]” of conservatives to supporting legal abortion to advocating COVID-19 mask mandates despite not following them in his own life.
The Cuomo investigation also led to the resignation of CNN Worldwide president Jeff Zucker, over an undisclosed affair with CNN executive vice president and chief marketing officer Allison Gollust.