‘I am truly sorry’: Matt Lauer releases statement after sexual misconduct allegations
NEW YORK — A day after NBC announced his termination, Matt Lauer said Thursday that he is “truly sorry” for the pain he has caused.
Lauer, 59, has been accused of sexual harassment by multiple women through interviews with The New York Times and Variety magazine. At least three women have filed complaints with NBC.
The statement was timed for release with Thursday’s “Today” show. NBC read the entire statement aloud on the morning show.
The statement reads:
“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. As I am writing this I realize the depth of the damage and disappointment I have left behind at home and at NBC. Some of what is being said about me is untrue or mischaracterized, but there is enough truth in these stories to make me feel embarrassed and ashamed. I regret that my shame is now shared by the people I cherish dearly. Repairing the damage will take a lot of time and soul searching and I’m committed to beginning that effort. It is now my full time job. The last two days have forced me to take a very hard look at my own troubling flaws. It’s been humbling. I am blessed to be surrounded by people I love. I thank them for their patience and grace.”
Lauer was fired Wednesday after an employee filed a complaint about “inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace.”
According to The New York Times, NBC News received two complaints against Lauer on Wednesday, one accused him of sexual assault.
The woman, who asked that her name is not used, said Lauer called her to his office in 2001, locked the door and assaulted her. She said she then passed out and had to be taken to a nurse.
The complaint came just hours after Variety released an article detailing multiple harassment accusations against him.
Some of the claims include that Lauer reportedly gave a colleague a sex toy as a present, including an explicit note about how he wanted to use it on her.
Another report says he called a female employee to his office, dropped his pants and showed her his penis. The Variety report claims after the employee didn’t do anything, he reprimanded her for not engaging in a sexual act with him.