Inside George Stephanopoulos and Robin Roberts feud that escalated over claims of sexual assault by GMA producer

The GEORGE Stephanopoulos and Robin Roberts feud that escalated over claims of sexual assault by a Good Morning America producer isn’t ending anytime soon.

The Sun can exclusively reveal that Kirsty Crawford, the woman at the center of the GMA star’s recent clash, has appealed her sexual harassment lawsuit against the network and former top producer Michael Corn, 53.

Robin Roberts and George Stephanopoulos allegedly argued over a staffer assault

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Robin Roberts and George Stephanopoulos allegedly argued over a staffer assaultCredit: Getty
Kirsty Crawford has sued ABC for alleged sexual assault by producer Michael Corn while on a business trip

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Kirsty Crawford has sued ABC for alleged sexual assault by producer Michael Corn while on a business tripCredit: Twitter

The former ABC employee filed her appeal on June 14, just days after the lower court’s dismissal.

In her lawsuit, Crawford noted that Corn also claimed to have been sexually assaulted by an ABC employee, Jill McClain.

Crawford opposes the dismissal and the judge’s decision to grant ABC and Corn’s “resignation request” and deletes paragraphs in the complaint regarding her colleague McClain’s allegations against the producer.

In her appeal, Crawford said the portion of the complaint alleging “that Respondent Corn sexually assaulted at least one other ABC employee under eerily similar circumstances is directly relevant to the appellant’s claims and has significant evidential value.”

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In the complaint, Crawford, 32, said she had worked with ABC for eight years and at the time of the filing, she was working as an anchor producer for George Stephanopoulos on GMA.

According to a report from The Daily Beast, GMA staffers discussed the suit during a team-wide appeal in 2021, with lead anchor Robin Roberts remarking, “If this happened to anyone on my team, I would have burned the case down.”

Staffers said the comment was addressed to Stephanopoulos, 61, who became “enraged” when he heard about Roberts’ not-so-subtle comment.

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Roberts, 61, was reportedly furious with ABC and the way her co-host handled the situation.

In a statement to The Daily Beast at the time, an ABC News spokesperson said: “Robin and George are doing well. She personally told him she was not referring to him and called the team the next day to reiterate that her comment was not about one person. person went.”

GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS KNEW

In her lawsuit, Crawford claimed that in November 2017, “Stephanopoulos called her to his office and explained that he had recently learned from a third party about Corn’s assault on Crawford that took place in Los Angeles in 2015.”

The lawsuit continued that “Stephanopoulos was emotional. He further explained that he should inquire internally about his reporting obligations.

Stephanopoulos disclosed the sexual assault to Heather Riley (then Senior Director of Publicity for Good Morning America) and Derek Medina (then Senior Vice President for Business Affairs at ABC News) and was referred to Tanya Menton (a Vice President in ABC’s litigation department). )’, the suit said.

“Later, Stephanopoulos reached out to Crawford again and urged Crawford to call Menton and tell her about the attack. Stephanopoulos told Crawford that Menton was expecting the call from Crawford,” the court papers said.

In her complaint, she claimed she spoke to Riley, who told her that “reporting the assault and harassment could get ‘messy’.”

The file also noted that this was the same month that their direct competitors on NBC’s Today Show were embroiled in their own sexual assault and harassment scandals, with disgraced host Matt Lauer having just been fired.

“Fearing retaliation from Corn and fearing that filing a formal complaint would do more harm than good or even lose her job, Crawford never called Menton,” she said in her complaint.

CRAWFORD’S CLAIMS AGAINST MAS

Crawford claimed that while on a work trip to cover the Academy Awards in 2015, a supposedly drunk Corn unexpectedly jumped into her Uber to get back to their hotel.

According to the complaint in the car, Corn grabbed Crawford’s hand and told her he wanted to help her with her career. Corn argued it was unlikely that Stephanopoulos really cared about Crawford’s career. But Corn assured Crawford that he on the other hand really cared about her career.

“Crawford was uncomfortable; she was in a moving vehicle, her boss hit her violently and she didn’t know how to get herself out of the situation safely. Corn didn’t stop there. He grabbed Crawford’s head and pulled it against his chest and kept telling her ‘just relax’ and kept asking ‘why are you so tense?’ Corn then began kissing Crawford on the head and rubbing her legs,” the court papers said.

“He accused Crawford of being ‘insecure’ and asked her if she had ‘daddy problems’. Every time Crawford tried to pull away, Corn immediately pulled her back.”

Back at the hotel, Crawford claimed that Corn appeared to be trying to go back to her room and not his.

Thinking she could outsmart her new boss, she walked him to his room instead.

When he got there he said he wasn’t feeling well and asked if she had Advil, so she took Advil out of her bag, poured a glass of water and put it on the bedside table.

According to the suit, “Corn then asked Crawford to sit with him. Crawford was confused and didn’t know what to do. She hesitated, but then sat down on the edge of the bed. To this day Crawford is ashamed herself on the edge of that bed and wished she had just left the room.

Corn grabbed Crawford’s arm and pulled her onto the bed and pulled her head to his chest. Crawford was stiff with fear. Holding Crawford’s head to his chest, Corn began to kiss the top of Crawford’s head, stroke her hair and give her to caress Over and over Corn repeated: “Shhhh, let’s just lay here; shhhh, let’s just lay here, shhhh.”

“Luckily Crawford was able to free himself from Corn’s grasp and hurried to her room.”

The former ABC employee said that that night after she freed herself from Corn, she called her boyfriend, now husband, crying hysterically over what had happened, telling him she never wanted to talk about it again.

McCLAIN’S MOVEMENTS AGAINST CORN

While Jill McClain is not a party to Crawford’s lawsuit because her allegations are too old to form the basis for a separate claim, they were included in support of Crawford’s case, according to the lawsuit.

McClain was working for ABC anchor Diane Sawyer at the time of her alleged assaults.

“Corn has also attacked McClain twice — once on a red flight from Los Angeles to New York and once in London — both times while traveling with McClain on ABC business.”

“Corn felt McClain’s vagina over her jeans on an airplane, pinned her to a hotel bed, pulled down the top of her jumpsuit and stroked her bare breasts.”

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While the time for McClain to file a claim against defendants has passed, and thus she has no financial interest in this lawsuit, here McClain shares her story in support of Crawford, hoping to ensure that Corn never has the chance. gets to prey on other women, and that ABC is forced to deal with the hostile work environment it has facilitated.

The Sun has contacted ABC for comment.

Robin Roberts with Michael Corn and Diane Sawyer on the GMA set

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Robin Roberts with Michael Corn and Diane Sawyer on the GMA setCredit: Getty
Stephanopoulos allegedly objected to a comment from Roberts after the charges were filed

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Stephanopoulos allegedly objected to a comment from Roberts after the charges were filedCredit: Getty Images – Getty

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