“Yesterday, Variety published a salacious story that revealed the specific claims against me for the first time — even though an independent third-party investigator found insufficient evidence to support the claims,” Seacrest said Tuesday in a lengthy statement.
“Much to my dismay, Variety didn’t speak with me or bother to speak with other credible witnesses or even ask for any of the evidence that was obtained during the investigation when offered, all of which clearly challenged the veracity of the claims made against me,” the talk show host said.
Seacrest continued: “This person who has accused me of horrible things offered, on multiple occasions, to withdraw her claims if I paid her millions of dollars. I refused. I have worked extremely hard to achieve my success and I don’t take my opportunities for granted. I don’t want to accuse anyone of not telling the truth but in this case, I have no choice but to again deny the claims against me, remind people that I was recused of any wrongdoing, and put the matter to rest.”
This comes just a day after Hardy spoke to Variety exclusively about her dealings with Seacrest.
Hardy said that in 2013 she was terminated by E! two weeks after reporting incidents to the human resources department. She alleged that Seacrest grabbed her buttocks and private parts.
Hardy told Variety that she was speaking out for the first time about the allegations because she felt “total exasperation” after her complaint was dismissed.
Seacrest is receiving support from the two television networks that employ him.
An E! spokesperson told BuzzFeed that an “extremely comprehensive and thorough” investigation was conducted and that there was “insufficient evidence” supporting the stylist’s claims.
An ABC spokesperson also confirmed that Seacrest will remain in the host’s chair for Live with Kelly and Ryan, and will host the American Idol reboot premiering on March 11.
Seacrest was first accused of harassment by his former E! wardrobe stylist in November but before his accuser went public with the claims, Seacrest went public to deny the “reckless” allegations against him and co-operated with an internal investigation into the matter by the E! network.
Almost three months later, E! completed its investigation into the allegations by outside counsel hired by NBCUniversal and found “insufficient evidence to support the claims.”
Following Seacrest’s Tuesday statement, Variety responded to the claim that the publication “didn’t speak” to Seacrest.
“Responding to a quote by Ryan Seacrest in a story posted today, in which Seacrest claims that Variety ‘didn’t speak with me or even ask for evidence obtained during the investigation of sexual misconduct allegations,’ we want to set the record straight. We spent one hour on the phone yesterday (2/26) with Seacrest’s attorney, Andrew Baum, and his publicist, Kelly Mullens Brown, speaking on background about the story that our reporter Dan Holloway was writing. We asked to speak to Seacrest directly and his reps declined to make him available. Seacrest’s reps claimed to have evidence discrediting the accuser, Suzie Hardy, but refused to provide that as well, citing legal restrictions.”
E! also confirms that Seacrest will be hosting E!’s Live from the Red Carpet for the 2018 Oscars as previously scheduled.
Read Seacrest’s full statement below.