After his former boss Shelley Ross accused him of touching her inappropriately, the TV personality says nothing while hosting his CNN show ‘Cuomo Prime Time’.
AceShowbiz –Chris Cuomo has been hit with sexual assault allegations by his ex-producer Shelley Ross. After her former producer revealed the incident in a public essay, the TV host remained silent while hosting his CNN show “Cuomo Prime Time“.
In an essay published on Friday, September 24 in The New York Times, Shelley claimed that Chris touched her inappropriately at a New York City bar in 2005 during a going-away party for an ABC colleague. “When Mr. Cuomo entered the Upper West Side bar, he walked toward me and greeted me with a strong bear hug while lowering one hand to firmly grab and squeeze the cheek of my buttock,” she recalled.
Shelley went on quoting Chris as allegedly saying, “I can do this now that you’re no longer my boss.” Shelley then explained that she replied, “No you can’t,” and pushed him off of her at the chest while stepping back. She also said her husband, who was at the party, saw the entire episode at close range.
Shelley added that she and her husband quickly left the bar and Chris emailed her an apology an hour after the incident. She provided a picture of the correspondence dated June 1, 2005, with the subject line that read, “now that i think of it … i am ashamed.” In it, Chris apologized to her “very good and noble husband” and then to her for putting her in “such a position.”
Though Shelley never thought Chris’ behavior was sexual in nature, she wrote, “His form of sexual harassment was a hostile act meant to diminish and belittle his female former boss in front of the staff.” In her column, Shelley also included Chris’ recent statement, shared to CNN on Thursday, September 23.
“As Shelley acknowledges, our interaction was not sexual in nature,” Chris defended himself. “It happened 16 years ago in a public setting when she was a top executive at ABC. I apologized to her then and I meant it.”
Instead of accepting his apology, Shelley questioned whether Chris was ashamed of what he did or just embarrassed because her husband saw it. “Mr. Cuomo may say this is a sincere apology. I’ve always seen it as an attempt to provide himself with legal and moral coverage to evade accountability,” she added.
Shelley also questioned Chris’ on-air proclamations about caring “very deeply about these issues” involving sexual harassment and seeking truth. Elsewhere in her note, she said she isn’t asking for Chris “to become the next casualty in this continuing terrible story” but to “journalistically repent” by agreeing on-air “to study the impact of sexism, harassment and gender bias in the workplace, including his own and then report on it.”
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