NEW YORK (WDTN) – A new book by Ronan Farrow, the journalist who investigated Harvey Weinstein and Matt Lauer in the wake of the #MeToo movement, alleges that Lauer raped an NBC colleague during the Sochi Winter Olympics in 2014, according to Variety.
“Catch and Kill” contains an interview with former NBC News employee Brooke Nevils, whose complaint led to Lauer’s firing from the network morning show, “Today” in 2017. Nevils asked NBC to keep her identity private at the time of Lauer’s firing. She made her identity public for the book.
According to the Variety report, the book’s interview with Nevils claims that Lauer invited her to his hotel room in Sochi, Russia twice – once to retrieve her press pass and another time because he invited her back. At the time, Nevils was working with former “Today” co-anchor Meredith Vieira.
According to Farrow, Nevils “had no reason to suspect Lauer would be anything but friendly based on prior experience.” Wearing a t-shirt and boxer shorts, Lauer allegedly pushed Nevils against the door and started kissing her before throwing her onto the bed in the hotel room as “asking if she liked anal sex.” She declined Lauer’s advances several times, Farrow writes.
While repeating that she was not interested, Lauer “just did it,” according to the book. Nevils claims in Farrow’s book that “it was non-consensual in the sense that I was too drunk to consent. It was non-consensual in that I said, multiple times, that I didn’t want to have anal sex.”
After the incident in Sochi, Nevils had additional sexual encounters with Lauer, saying “it was completely transactional, It was not a relationship.” She was allegedly “terrified about the control Lauer had over her career.” According to Farrow, Nevils said she told “like a million people” about what had happened with Lauer.
In 2017, after receiving advice from Meredith Vieira, Farrow says Nevils went to NBC’s human resources department with a lawyer. Lauer was then fired from NBC News. Nevils claimed that her work life “became torture,” as everyone at NBC News knew that it was her based on the limited possibilities from those who went to Sochi to cover the Olympics. Nevils went on medical leave in 2018 then was paid “seven figures,” according to Farrow.
“Catch and Kill” is set to be released on Oct. 15.