Brokaw ‘hurt, unmoored’ by sex-harassment allegations
Tom Brokaw denied sexual misconduct charges and told friends in a late-night email that he felt “ambushed and then perp walked” in the media as an avatar of male misogyny and stripped of his honor and achievement.
The 78-year-old broadcast journalist penned an emotional response to accusations that he had made unwanted advances on a former colleague, writing that “it is 4:00 a.m. on the first day of my new life as an accused predator in the universe of American journalism.” The letter was first reported in the Hollywood Reporter and confirmed by The Associated Press.
Brokaw, meanwhile, withdrew on Friday as a commencement speaker at Connecticut’s Sacred Heart University next month, saying his appearance would be a distraction.
The Washington Post and Variety reported the charges by Linda Vester, a former NBC News and Fox News Channel correspondent. She said Brokaw went to her New York hotel room once in the mid-1990s, proposed an affair and tried to forcibly kiss her. She said he tried to kiss her one other time at her apartment in London and once grabbed her from behind and tickled her on her waist.
She told Variety that despite not being at fault, she “suffered years of humiliation and isolation” from the incidents.
Brokaw said he never sought an affair, and that Vester had approached him for advice.
“I am angry, hurt and unmoored from what I thought would be the final passage of my life and career, a mix of written and broadcast journalism, philanthropy and participation in environmental and social causes that have always given extra meaning to my life,” he wrote.