Lauer releases statement on sexual misconduct allegations: 'I am truly sorry'
WASHINGTON (Sinclair Broadcast Group) - In the wake of sexual misconduct allegations against him, Matt Lauer says he is "truly sorry" to the people he has hurt and is committed to "repairing the damage."
The former "Today" show anchor released a statement Thursday morning, the day after NBC News announced his firing from the network.
Lauer's full 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 the people I love. I thank them for their patience and grace."
According to NBC, one of Lauer's female colleagues accused him of "inappropriate sexual behavior" during the 2014 Sochi Olympics that allegedly continued in the workplace. An NBC spokesperson said, "We can say unequivocally, that, prior to Monday night, current NBC News management was never made aware of any complaints about Matt Lauer’s conduct."
However, NBC News Chairman Andrew Lack said Wednesday there was "reason to believe this may not have been an isolated incident."
Following the news that Lauer's 20-year "Today" stint had ended, Variety published a report detailing sexual harassment allegations against him by three women. The publication said it had been investigating such claims for two months.
The New York Times reported Wednesday that NBC had received at least two new complaints about the newsman after his termination.