Before long-time Today co-host Matt Lauer was terminated by NBC, the broadcaster lived a somewhat secret life of debauchery, new reports reveal.
Some of his colleagues were "shocked" and "devastated" by allegations of Lauer's inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace while others expressed they weren't too surprised, citing his alleged infidelity and power in the network.
Lauer's history with women, both personally and in the workplace, paints a chilling picture of misogyny that, after more than 20 years, has finally come to light.
In a statement, Lauer admitted "there is enough truth in these stories to make me feel embarrassed and ashamed."
PopCulture.com compiled a brief history.
January 1997: Lauer earned the role of co-host of Today, a title he held until his abrupt firing on Tuesday.
1998: Zoltan Molnar accused Lauer of cheating on then-fiancée, former Dutch model Annette Roque with his wife, Jessica Thorman. "He's not the goody-goody nice guy he looks like on TV!" Molnar told the National Enquirer for a story titled "Black Book Confidential: Matt Lauer's Ladies."
October 1998: Lauer married his current wife, Annette Roque. Roque field for divorce in 2006, citing her husband's "controlling and cruel" behavior, "continual mental abuse" and valuing his work over family, but it was withdrawn three weeks later. The couple remain married but live "separate" lives, with Roque living with their three children in the Hamptons.
2001: A former NBC employee told the New York Times on Nov. 29 that Lauer sexually assaulted her in his office. She claims he locked the door using a mechanism built into his desk, then had her unbutton her blouse. Later allegedly got up from his desk, pulled down the woman’s pants and had sex with her over a chair. The woman passed out during the incident and Lauer’s assistant took her to a nurse to receive care, she claims.
2006: During an interview with Meredith Vieira, Lauer told the fellow broadcaster she had a “pretty sweater” when she leaned forward to grab some scripts. “Keep bending over like that, it’s a nice view,” he was caught on camera telling Viera.
2008 Friars Club Roast: During a celebrity “roast” in New York, Couric joked about her televised colonoscopy, to which Lauer replied, “Let me just say that I saw that colon a lot before the rest of you saw it.” Couric also joked that Lauer “loves to eat curry,” alluding to Ann Curry. Lauer later told the crowd that Curry knew exactly “how big my d--k really is.”
2012: Former Today co-host Katie Couric told Andy Cohen on Watch What Happens Live that Lauer “pinches me on the ass a lot.” No NBC executives ever contacted her about the claims.
June 2012: Ann Curry was fired from Today after ratings dipped behind rival ABC's Good Morning America. Lauer was reported to have worked behind the scenes to get the veteran anchor fired so he could move into her position.
December 2012: Lauer was criticized for questioning Anne Hathaway after tabloids ran an upskirt photo of the actress exiting a taxi. “Seen a lot of you lately,” he opened the interview segment.
2014 Sochi Winter Olympics: Lauer sexually harassed a female intern, who filed a complaint with NBC that led to Lauer's termination on Tuesday. She said the inappropriate behavior, which included lewd messages and photos, continued following the games.
July 2016: Rumors allege that Lauer had an affair with Today co-host Natalie Morales, though both denied any romantic engagement. Morales left the show that year to join Access Hollywood in Los Angeles after sources said there was an "awkwardness" between the pair.
May 2016: Lauer appeared on Vieira's talk show when she claimed he had a "huge bag of sex toys" stored in his dressing room closet. In the Nov. 29 report by Variety, an accuser claimed Lauer gifted her a sex toy, writing a detailed note about how he'd like to use it on her.
2017: Lauer reportedly acted unprofessionally when NBC appointed Megyn Kelly her own spot on Today following her exit from Fox News. Insiders claim he was upset he didn't approve the hire and refused to appear on her 9 a.m. hour.
Nov. 27, 2017: An NBC employee filed a complaint against Lauer after he continually sexually harassed her during and after the 2014 Sochi Olympics.
Nov. 28, 2017: NBC informed Lauer of his termination around 10 p.m.
Nov. 29, 2017: Today co-host Savannah Guthrie announced Lauer’s termination from NBC following a single complaint of “inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace.” She read a statement from NBC Chairman Andy Lack, who said the evidence presented a “clear violation of out company’s standards.” He also suggested Lauer’s behavior “may not have been an isolated incident.”
Reporters at Variety and the New York Times published investigative reports detailing sexual harassment at Lauer's hand by several accusers. Former colleagues alleged Lauer exposed himself to them, gifted them sex toys or sexually assaulted them while they were employed by the network.
Nov. 30, 2017: Lauer issued a statement on Today in which he expressed “sorrow and regret” for his actions. "Some of what is being said about me is untrue or mischaracterized, but there is enough truth in these stories to make me feel embarrassed and ashamed," he said.