Linda Vester, who last year leveled sexual misconduct allegations against former NBC News anchor Tom Brokaw, penned a response to accused rapist and former Today show anchor Matt Lauer, calling the 61-year-old a “self-absorbed coward.”
“Matt may pretend with this bizarre letter that all he desires is to ‘set the record straight,’ but those of us who have survived sexual harassment and assault know better. I believe his words are intended to harm and silence women. They are the rantings of a self-absorbed coward who has yet to take true responsibility for what he has done.”
As The Inquisitr previously reported, on Wednesday, Lauer issued a letter in which he denied allegations that he had raped former NBC News producer Brooke Nevils while the two were in Sochi, Russia covering the 2014 Winter Olympics. Nevils worked as a producer for former Today anchor Meredith Vieira, who would eventually suggest she bring a lawyer to NBC to tell them about her allegations against Lauer. Nevils’ allegations resulted in Lauer’s 2017 termination from his position at Today.
In former NBC News journalist Ronan Farrow’s upcoming book, Catch and Kill, Nevils claims that Lauer raped her anally, causing her to bleed for days. Nevils admits that the two continued a sexual relationship following the alleged rape in Russia, though Nevils said that relationship was closer to a “transaction” than a “relationship.”
Lauer, who was married at the time and has since been divorced, has admitted to the sexual relationship with Nevils, though in his letter claimed that he did not rape her in Sochi, and that she was not crying during what she alleged was her assault. Nevils has said she was too drunk to consent to have sex with Lauer, following drinks they shared earlier in the evening with Vieira.
In her response, published by The Daily Beast on Thursday, Vester broke down Lauer’s response and explained why she believed it to be problematic. Vester, who says she knows Nevils well, said that Lauer was guilty of a tactic she called “DARVO,” which she explained is an acronym that stands for Deny, Attack, Reverse, Victim, And Offender.
Vester also claimed that Lauer was guilty of “slut-shaming” Nevils in his Wednesday public response to the allegations against him. Vester also took issue with Lauer’s implications that Nevils was interested in creating the allegations against him for fame or financial gain.
— TODAY (@TODAYshow) October 9, 2019
“Women do not step forward to expose a predator for wealth and notoriety,” Vester said. “That’s laughable.”
According to a Newsweek article published last year, Vester was an NBC News war reporter who has since accused former longtime NBC Nightly News anchor Tom Brokaw of inappropriate sexual behavior in the early 1990s, allegations that Brokaw has denied.
Last year, Vester said that while the two worked together, Brokaw had forcibly tried to kiss her when she was 28-years-old. Vester also said that the famous NBC anchor, now 79 and still occasionally appearing on various NBC programs, once groped her in a conference room in front of their colleagues at NBC News. Vester also said that the longtime Nightly News anchor once arrived, uninvited, to her hotel room where he made unwanted sexual advances, per Newsweek.
Vester worked at NBC in Washington, London, Chicago, and New York, where she anchored early morning news programs on NBC News and served as an anchor at its cable channel, MSNBC. Vester would eventually move from NBC to work as an anchor at FOX News, Newsweek said.