Wendy Williams has been off-air since late December, after fumbling through her beloved daytime talk show with slurs and repeated words, looking worse for the wear. Williams released a statement shortly after, blaming the incident on painkillers and an autoimmune disease, but now, a source close to Williams and the show has revealed to Page Six that the drama may be caused by Williams’ husband, Kevin Hunter.
Hunter, who also serves as Williams’ manager, has allegedly been causing the host anguish and pain through physical and mental abuse for quite a few years — and now it’s all come to the surface, and, unable to cope, Williams is unraveling in the public eye.
“Sometimes [Wendy] would be in her dressing room, doing whatever she does between shows, and her behavior for the second show would seem erratic. It started happening more and more frequently… trailing off mid-sentence, not finishing her thoughts,” a source close to the Wendy Williams Show said.
Rumors have swirled around set that Williams may be back to her partying ways. As Page Six also shared, Williams has been open about her cocaine and alcohol abuse, and some staffers feel she’s fallen back into the grips of addiction.
“Wendy does everything really hard. If she’s drinking, it’s bottles and bottles,” another source shared. If she has returned to her hard-partying ways, sources think that her husband may be the reason for the decline in sobriety.
A former intern of Williams said that when Hunter would come to the office, the talk show host would lock herself in the bathroom, and have the intern knock on the door when he left. That source also revealed that Hunter would drag Williams into a room and the staff could hear altercations behind the closed door, as well as slaps and intense movements.
Hunter’s erratic behavior also reportedly led him to lash out at staffers, rounding them all up for a mass firing — telling them to get their stuff and go home. Williams refused to stand up for her staff, and simply told them “it is what it is.”
“In one instance. Mr. Hunter stormed into the studio, demanded that other employees leave and openly physically abused Ms. Williams, pinning her against the wall with his hand around her neck, choking her while repeatedly pounding his fist into the wall directly by her head,” alleged a complaint made by former employee Nicole Spence, who brought up a complaint against Williams and Hunter for sexual harassment and having to work in a “hostile” environment.
Friends of Williams are now just hoping that she is taking this hiatus to get the help she needs, and hopefully some space from her allegedly abusive spouse. Charlamagne Tha God, who co-hosted the show with Williams before being let go in 2008 — and who was once a close friend of the former radio host — said that he keeps his distance from Hunter, saying he is a “terrible” human being.
“I will just tell you that I hope Wendy Williams wakes up before one day she doesn’t wake up,” he added.