According to The Wall Street Journal, Kim Godwin, who was announced as the new president of ABC News in March this year, told staffers on Thursday that she has asked for an independent probe into the network’s handling of the allegations.
The Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday that a newly filed lawsuit alleges that Michael Corn, a former top producer on Good Morning America, sexually assaulted two staffers (one current and one former) on separate occasions.
“We can’t have us investigating us. We need an independent person,” Ms Godwin reportedly told staffers on Thursday on a conference call. “The process has to be independent.”
Mr Corn vehemently denied the claims and any allegation of improper sexual contact in a statement to the newspaper, and said he would defend himself “vigorously”.
ABC is also reportedly named as a defendant in the lawsuit, which alleges that the company failed to take disciplinary action after receiving several complaints from women about Mr Corn’s alleged conduct.
According to The Wall Street Journal, the complaint alleges that officials at ABC learned of the plaintiff’s allegations in 2017 but only launched an investigation after the plaintiff and the other staffer filed formal complaints in February of this year.
ABC News told The Independent: “We are committed to upholding a safe and supportive work environment and have a process in place that thoroughly reviews and addresses complaints that are made. ABC News disputes the claims made against it and will address this matter in court.”