After Ryan Seacrest denied the sexual misconduct allegations leveled against him by former E! stylist Suzie Hardy this week, a witness has spoken with NBC NEWS / NBC's TODAY about the host's alleged behavior.
In an exclusive interview with Today on Wednesday, a former co-worker of Hardy's corroborated many of the claims she made about Seacrest, including allegations that the American Idol host sexually touched her.
"She would go to tie his shoe and Ryan would shove her head toward his crotch," the former co-worker told Kate Snow over the phone. "I saw that more than once."
The man also detailed an incident that allegedly took place before an Oscars red carpet special in 2008 with Hardy helping Seacrest get ready at the Roosevelt Hotel in Los Angeles. The former co-worker said that at one point, he saw Seacrest holding Hardy in a bear hug from behind.
"She yelled 'Get off of me,'" the former co-worker said. "She was trying to get away from him."
He added, "I could see an erect penis in his underwear."
Hardy's lawyer said this incident occurred in 2009.
A source close to Seacrest denied the former co-worker's claims, saying the man is a friend of Hardy's and that there are other witnesses who would dispute Hardy's allegations.
Hardy had accused Seacrest of sexual misconduct last year but made her claims public with a piece published by Variety on Monday. After her original allegations, E! conducted an investigation but said that it found "insufficient evidence to support the claims against Seacrest."
Hardy, who was a single mother, said she endured the alleged abuse for fear of losing her job. She added that she began working as a stylist for E! News in 2007 and that her position ended in 2013 after she reported Seacrest’s behavior to human resources executives.
A lawyer for Seacrest denied the allegations in a statement to Us Weekly.0comments
"On January 31st the network notified us that their independent third-party investigation had concluded that there was insufficient evidence to support her claims, effectively, clearing my client’s name," the statement read. "It’s telling that after my client refused to pay her money, and the E! investigation resulted as it did, that she is now coming forward to share her debunked story to the press.”
Photo Credit: Getty Images / Jason Merritt