CNN not backing down on Morgan Freeman sexual harassment story
American broadcaster Cable News Network (CNN) has said it will not retract a story it aired with claims of how legendary Hollywood actor Morgan Freeman sexually harassed eight women.
Last week, CNN ran a story of inappropriate behavior by the 80-year-old directed at atleast eight women, one of whom is CNN entertainment reporter Chloe Melas.
Freeman’s other accusers are said to be journalists, production assistants, and staffers at Revelations Entertainment, the company he co-founded in 1996.
Melas alleges that Freeman’s sexually harassed her when she interviewed him for CNN at a press junket for the movie Going in Style in 2017.
According to Melas, who was six months pregnant at the time, while in a room with Freeman amongst other fellow actors, he shook her hand not letting go while repeatedly looking her up and down and saying more than once a variation of, “I wish I was there. You are ripe.”
Since the encounter, Melas embarked on an investigative mission on Morgan leading to the findings of the story with eight women going on record that Freeman made suggestive comments about their appearance and inappropriately touched them.
After the story broke, Freeman, through his lawyer Robert M. Schwartz, sent a letter on Tuesday to CNN president Jeff Zucker accusing the TV station of journalistic malpractice and demanding an apology.
In response, CNN issued a statement categorically stating it’s position to stand by the story and that they wouldn’t retract neither apologize for airing the story.
It went on to state that it will fight any kind of intimidation from Freeman and his lawyers of stopping the cable from covering the such an important story.
“The unfounded accusations made by Mr Freeman’s lawyer are disappointing and are difficult to reconcile with Mr Freeman’s own public statements in the aftermath of the story. CNN stands by its reporting and will respond forcefully to any attempt by Mr Freeman or his representatives to intimidate us from covering this important public issue,” CNN stated.
Freeman, who is a father of four, has denied the allegations of any wrong doing but admitted to having made some people feel uncomfortable throughout his career.
Freeman has starred in hundreds of movies since 1964. Some of his notable movies that became popular worldwide include London has Fallen, Olympus Has Fallen, Gone Baby Gone among many others.