Famed journalist Charlie Rose to face sexual harassment lawsuit

Rosalie Gross
May 6, 2018

With 27 more women accusing former news anchor Charlie Rose of sexual misconduct, a report Thursday calls into question CBS News' claims that his behavior was a surprise before he was sacked last November. The plaintiffs are Katherine Brooks Harris, Sydney McNeal, and Yuqing ("Chelsea") Wei, each of whom alleges that Rose harassed them in 2017.

The lawsuit, filed in New York Supreme Court, alleges that Rose habitually made sexually suggestive comments and engaged in inappropriate sexual contact with the three employees.

Rose fired Harris and McNeal following last year's Post story, and CBS did not offer them new positions, the lawsuit said.

The lawsuit comes one day after the Washington Post published an investigative story that reported an additional 27 women, including 14 CBS News employees, had accused Rose of harassment. Rose inappropriately touched them.

After the bombshell story, Rose admitted to some of the allegations but has claimed there was no wrongdoing.

The litigation marks the first known legal filing against Rose concerning sexual harassment. Rose also placed "his hands on her thighs and [kissed]" McNeal on the cheek as well, the lawsuit alleges.

After Rose was sacked, the lawsuit alleges that Wei filed a complaint against Kadro with CBS' director of human resources, Maria Cottone.

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In this August 10, 2015 file photo, Political Director for CBS News, John Dickerson, participates in the CBS News panel at the CBS Summer TCA Tour in Beverly Hills, Calif. CBS News has selected Dickerson as Charlie Rose's replacement on the "CBS This Morning" program, pairing him with current anchors Gayle King and Norah O'Donnell. The three women are represented by Kenneth Goldberg of Goldberg Fliegel, who could not be reached for comment Friday. The executive assistant to the show's new producer, Ryan Kadro, said she told her boss about the attention Rose was paying to the young woman, and said he did not seem alarmed. Rose reportedly called her "China Doll".

"CBS never got back to Ms. Wei about her complaint", the suit said.

Kadro did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Her complaint included allegations against Kadro, whom she said kicked her chair as a show of intimidation.

The Post has since reported that a total 35 women have come forward with allegations against Rose, whom one former intern reportedly said "falls toward the worst end of the spectrum" of sexual harassment.

"Three of them are now suing Rose and CBS News, saying they were subjected to ".repeated, ongoing and unlawful physical and verbal sexual harassment." by Rose; that CBS ".unlawfully retaliated." against one of them and that the company ".failed to investigate the matter".

In the following three decades, three CBS managers had been made aware of the complaints, according to the Post investigation.

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