Brooke Nevils, the former NBC News producer who accused Matt Lauer of rape, is slamming his open letter denying her claims, calling it “a case study in victim-blaming.”
Nevils responded to Lauer’s lengthy defense of his alleged misconduct, which was detailed in journalist Ronan Farrow’s new book, Catch and Kill, in a statement to NBC News Wednesday night. In advanced excerpts from the book, which will be published Oct. 15, Nevils claims Lauer anally raped her while they were working the Sochi Olympics in 2014.
“There’s a Matt Lauer that millions of Americans watched on TV every morning for two decades. And there is the Matt Lauer who this morning attempted to bully a former colleague into silence,” she said in her statement to NBC News tonight. “His open letter was a case study in victim-blaming. I am not afraid of him now regardless of his threats, bullying, and the shaming and predatory tactics I knew he would and now has tried to use against me.”
Nevils and Lauer’s relationship continued after the alleged incident, which she said was due to her fear of the former Today show anchor’s control over her career. Her complaint to NBC at the time led to Lauer’s firing from Today in 2017, but her identity and the specifics of her complaint remained confidential until this week.
Lauer denied Nevil’s claims that their sexual encounter was non-consensual in a 1400-word open letter obtained by Variety. “It is categorically false, ignores the facts, and defies common sense,” the statement read. “I had an extramarital affair with Brooke Nevils 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. We performed oral sex on each other, we had vaginal sex, and we had anal sex.”
His full statement can be found on Variety.
Nevils posted a message Wednesday on Twitter to express gratitude to her supporters.
“I want to thank the many survivors who shared their stories with me today and offered their support. It takes courage, and I am truly grateful,” she wrote.