By Liam Quinn, Brian Flood
Published October 09, 2019
Curry -- who worked on the show from 1997 to 2015 -- said Wednesday she considered the woman who made the allegations against Lauer to be a “credible young woman of good character.”
“She came to NBC News an eager and guileless 20-something, brimming with talent,” Curry tweeted.
“I believe she is telling the truth. And that breaks my heart.”
The comment came after shocking allegations about Lauer, reportedly revealed in an upcoming book by Ronan Farrow, drew a sharp and somber reaction from the disgraced anchor’s former colleagues on “Today” Wednesday.
Lauer, who was fired from NBC News for sexual misconduct in 2017, was accused of a sex crime in graphic detail in a Variety article, which reported reading the bombshell claims in a copy of Farrow’s upcoming book “Catch and Kill” that it obtained.
“Matt Lauer’s conduct was appalling, horrific and reprehensible, as we said at the time. That’s why he was fired within 24 hours of us first learning of the complaint. Our hearts break again for our colleague,” NBC News said in a statement that was read on air.
Lauer denied the graphic rape claim in a strongly worded letter that his lawyer provided to Fox News on Wednesday, in which the former “Today” co-host said he initially was quiet for the sake of his children -- but will now defend himself.
“It is alleged that an extramarital, but consensual, sexual encounter I have previously admitted having, was in fact an assault. It is categorically false, ignores the facts, and defies common sense,” Lauer wrote.
“I had an extramarital affair with [a colleague] in 2014. It began when she came to my hotel room very late one night in Sochi, Russia. We engaged in a variety of sexual acts... each act was mutual and completely consensual,” Lauer added.
But, as Variety reported, Farrow wrote that the former NBC News employee -- whose complaint eventually led to Lauer’s firing in 2017 -- said the incident occurred after she ran into Lauer at a hotel bar over drinks with Meredith Viera during the Sochi Olympics.
Fox News is not naming the alleged victim at this time, despite Farrow, Variety and Lauer’s attorney each revealing her identity.
Farrow reportedly wrote that the accuser went to Lauer’s hotel room twice that night, first because Lauer jokingly took her press credentials and a second time because the ex-NBC News host invited her back.
She “had no reason to suspect Lauer would be anything but friendly based on prior experience,” Farrow wrote, according to Variety.
The accuser reportedly told Farrow that on the second visit to his room, Lauer kissed her against the door then flipped her over on the bed and asked her if she “liked anal sex.”
Farrow reportedly wrote that the alleged victim said she didn’t want to partake in the act several times before she eventually cried into a pillow while Lauer proceeded without her consent. According to Variety, the accuser indicated that she was in pain for several days after the 'nonconsensual" incident.
NBC News Chairman Andy Lack, a key figure of the Variety report, also issued a statement that was read aloud on "Today."
"Our highest priority is to ensure we have a workplace environment where everyone feels safe and protected. We are absolutely committed to making this a reality. There can be no exception,” Lack said.
In 2018, Lauer issued a statement that denied all alleged wrongdoing, which was re-aired on “Today” on Wednesday in regards to the latest allegation.
“I want to make it perfectly clear that any allegations or reports of coercive, aggressive or abusive behavior actions on my part, at any time, are absolutely false,” Lauer said at the time in the re-broadcast clip.
Fox News has not seen a copy of the closely guarded book, “Catch and Kill,” which is set to be released Oct. 15.