Most of the sexual assault allegations against CBS head honcho, Les Moonves, date back decades—and before he was president and CEO of the network. But in a new revelation, the longtime CBS president admits he tried to kiss a female doctor 19 years ago against her will during an early morning checkup. Moonves was hired by CBS 24 years ago and has been one of the most powerful men in the entertainment industry until his recent fall.
According to a new report by Vanity Fair, a source familiar with the situation revealed that Les Moonves was the anonymous subject of an article published in May by Dr. Anne Peters in the Annals of Internal Medicine titled "A Physician's Place in the #MeToo Movement."
In her article, Peters, who is now Professor of Medicine at the Keck School of Medicine of USC and Director of the USC Clinical Diabetes Programs, recounted a disturbing incident with a powerful, "V.I.P patient" who she had been commissioned to see privately in the very early morning before regular business hours nearly 20 years ago when she was working at UCLA Medical Center.
In her account, Peters alleged that the patient grabbed her as she stepped toward the examination table and twice tried to force himself on her. After she rejected him, the high-profile patient stood beside the examination table and satisfied himself, then dressed and left the room.Dr. Peters stated that due to her occupation as a physician she was "legally unable" to name the patient who harassed her, but she reported the incident to the UCLA medical center to ensure that a note would be placed in the man's chart warning other medical professionals never to be alone with him.
Peters revealed that the patient called her the next day to apologize and admitted that he had "a terrible problem" and had done the same thing with other women, claiming he was unable to control himself when left alone with women. The doctor instructed him to get counseling right away and to avoid situations in which he would be alone with women.
While Peters hasn't confirmed the man's identity due to privacy laws, Vanity Fair reports that Les Moonves is the man in the story. The longtime CBS exec's calendar reportedly includes an entry that confirms he had an appointment with Dr. Peters at 7 a.m. on September 17, 1999. Moonves was the president and CEO of CBS Television and married to first wife Nancy Wiesenfeld at the time.
In response to the story, Moonves issued a statement via his rep in which he admitted to trying to kiss the doctor, but nothing more.
"The appalling allegations about my conduct toward a female physician some 20 years ago are untrue. What is true, and what I deeply regret, is that I tried to kiss the doctor. Nothing more happened."After the New Yorker published a scathing report by Ronan Farrow detailing Moonves' alleged sexual harassment of six women from the 1980s to the early 2000s, Moonves admitted to makings some women "uncomfortable by making advances," but reiterated that "he always abided by the principle that 'no' means 'no,'" and he "never misused" his powerful position "to harm or hinder anyone's career."
Now, on the heels of a second scathing report by the New Yorker which included six, much more graphic allegations of sexual misconduct, Les Moonves has resigned from CBS after 24 years of service, despite insisting that the "appalling" allegations are untrue. Moonves is in line to receive $80 million in CBS stock pending an investigation into the allegations against him.