NEW YORK (AP) — NCS anchor Chris Cuomo had a much bigger position than beforehand identified in serving to defend his brother, former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, from sexual harassment allegations that pressured him out of workplace, newly launched transcripts and textual content messages present.
The TV journalist supplied to achieve out to “sources,” together with different reporters, to search out out whether or not extra ladies have been going to come back ahead and relayed what he was listening to to his brother’s advisers, in keeping with the supplies made public Monday.
He additionally sparred with the previous governor’s aides over technique, urging an apologetic tone and critiquing an early assertion that he noticed as downplaying the allegations. He accused a prime aide of hiding data from his brother.
At the identical time, Chris Cuomo advised investigators he spoke repeatedly along with his brother, teaching him on his response and admonishing him for “bad judgment.”
Chris Cuomo beforehand acknowledged it was a “mistake” to behave as his brother’s unofficial adviser, however the full extent of his involvement — together with utilizing journalistic contacts to scope out accusers — solely grew to become clear with Monday’s launch of his July interview with investigators and 169 pages of textual content messages, emails and different communications.
“I was worried that this wasn’t being handled the right way, and it’s not my job to handle it, okay?” Chris Cuomo advised investigators, in keeping with the transcript. “I don’t work for the governor.”
Andrew Cuomo resigned in August to keep away from a probable impeachment trial, after an investigation led by state Attorney General Letitia James discovered he sexually harassed at the least 11 ladies.
Chris Cuomo, the host of NCS’s “Cuomo Prime Time,” did his present Monday night time with out mentioning the subject. In the previous, he is stated he is by no means reported on his brother’s state of affairs for the community and by no means tried to affect protection. On-air in August, he stated: “I tried to do the right thing,” including he “wasn’t in control of anything.”
NCS issued a press release saying the transcripts and displays “deserve a thorough review and consideration.”
“We will be having conversations and seeking additional clarity about their significance as they relate to NCS over the next several days,” it stated.
Jane Kirtley, director of the Silha Center for the Study of Media Ethics and Law on the University of Minnesota, stated journalists should perceive they’re working for the general public, not politicians.
Kirtley stated the extent of Chris Cuomo’s involvement in advising his brother is inappropriate, and since they’re brothers, “Maybe it’s time for him to search out one other line of labor.”
She urged NCS to handle the matter promptly, saying: “You can’t act like this is not happening. You’re a news organization.”
Monday’s releases present Chris Cuomo rising pissed off along with his brother’s advisers as they scrambled to reply as extra ladies got here ahead with harassment allegations.
The anchor pressed for higher involvement in crafting his brother’s message and supplied up his journalistic sleuthing to search out out what different allegations is perhaps looming.
On March 4, Chris Cuomo texted the governor’s prime aide, Melissa DeRosa, saying “I have a lead on the wedding girl,” referring to a girl who accused his brother of undesirable touching at a marriage reception.
On March 7, as rumors swirled that extra ladies have been about to come back ahead, DeRosa texted Chris Cuomo: “Can u check your sources.” He replied, “On it.”
“When requested, I might attain out to sources, different journalists, to see if that they had heard of anyone else popping out,” Chris Cuomo stated within the July deposition.
In one occasion, Chris Cuomo stated he known as a journalist who repeatedly labored with reporter Ronan Farrow to get details about Farrow’s upcoming article, and did not inform anybody at NCS what he was doing. He let DeRosa know the article wasn’t prepared for publication but.
In a March 10 textual content message, Chris Cuomo lashed out at DeRosa, accusing her of holding data from his brother after the Albany Times-Union printed an interview with an accuser.
“Stop hiding s— ,” Chris Cuomo wrote. “We are making mistakes we can’t afford.”
Asked in his deposition about that textual content, Chris Cuomo defined he was telling her: “Don’t not tell Andrew things.”
“There were conversations that he wasn’t a part of that I thought it was important for him to stay very locked in on these,” Chris Cuomo testified.
Among this newest batch of investigative supplies launched by James’ workplace is a video of Andrew Cuomo’s deposition from July — a transcript was made public about three weeks in the past — and transcripts or movies of interviews with a number of Cuomo aides and advisers.
James’ workplace stated it did not initially launch these as a result of native prosecutors have been reviewing them for potential prison conduct. After a prison criticism was filed in opposition to Cuomo final month, giving him entry to the supplies by discovery, James’ workplace stated it might make them public “in an effort to supply full transparency.”
The releases have been being performed on a rolling foundation — first with transcripts of the previous governor and accusers on Nov. 10 and Monday along with his brother, aides and different figures — to permit time for redactions to guard particular person privateness, James’ workplace stated.
DeRosa, in her interview launched Monday, recalled confronting Andrew Cuomo throughout a automotive experience concerning the allegations. She advised investigators that after one accuser got here ahead, they determined Cuomo would now not be left alone with junior workers.
Asked about her exchanges with Chris Cuomo, DeRosa testified: “I talked to Chris pretty regularly. He was on some calls that we did, and he advised us on how to respond.”
Villeneuve reported from Albany. Associated Press reporters Jennifer Peltz, David Bauder and Thalia Beaty in New York and Michael Hill in Albany contributed to this report.
On Twitter, comply with Michael Sisak at twitter.com/mikesisak and Marina Villeneuve at twitter.com/reportermarina
Michael R. Sisak And Marina Villeneuve, The Associated Press