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A domestic violence activist says NBC tried to kill her story detailing sexual assault allegations against Russell Simmons and AJ Calloway

Published by Business Insider on Mon, 21 Oct 2019


Domestic violence activist and author Sil Lai Abrams published an op-ed in The Daily Beast on Monday in which she accused NBC of trying to kill a story about her sexual assault allegations against music mogul Russell Simmons and former "Extra" host AJ Calloway.Abrams said that she first brought her allegations to MSNBC'sJoy Reid in 2017, and after they filmed an interview on the subject in early 2018, she believed that it would air on NBC.Abrams said that after an "elaborate and bizarre vetting process," she was eventually told by Reid to take the story elsewhere. Abrams' allegations were eventually published in The Hollywood Reporter in June 2018.In the report, Abrams claims that Simmons raped her in 1994, and that Calloway sexually assaulted her in his car in 2006. Calloway was later arrested after police investigated the allegation, but the case was dismissed on "procedural grounds." Both men have denied the allegations.Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.Domestic violence activist and author Sil Lai Abrams says a story about her sexual assault allegations against music mogul Russell Simmons and once-"Extra" host AJ Calloway was killed by NBC in 2018.In an op-ed for The Daily Beast, Abrams wrote that NBC tried to kill her story detailing her allegations in 2018, one year after Ronan Farrow published his Harvey Weinstein report that he claims NBC tried to kill.Abrams' allegations were eventually published in The Hollywood reporter in June 2018.In the report, Abrams claims that Simmons raped her in 1994, and that Calloway sexually assaulted her in his car in 2006. Calloway was later arrested after police investigated the allegation, but the case was dismissed on "procedural grounds." Both men have denied the allegations.Abrams said in her op-ed that she first brought her allegations to MSNBC's Joy Reid in 2017, and after they filmed an interview on the subject in early 2018, she believed that it would air on NBC.Shortly before the air date, Abrams said Reid received an email from Simmons' attorney and Abrams was told the segment was being put on hold.Read more: Ronan Farrow and NBC: a timeline of the 2-year conflict between the Pulitzer-winning journalist and the network accused of trying to kill his Harvey Weinstein expos"Over the next several months, NBC put me through an elaborate and bizarre vetting process. I provided legal documentation, hospital bills, and over a dozen corroborating witnesses. Still, they stonewalled. I asked Joy repeatedly if NBC was going to do to her what it did to Ronan, and she said that she didn't think so. We both agreed that it would reflect very poorly if word got out that the network had suppressed yet another story of alleged sexual assault," she said in The Daily Beast.Abrams said she was eventually told by Reid to take the story elsewhere, which is how her allegations were eventually published in The Hollywood Reporter."I am one of the many survivors that NBC silenced, and bore witness to how it treated one of their top talents for trying to break a story on sexual predators. Given what has been exposed thus far by Farrow and others, it's clear that NBC thinks it can spin their way out of thisagain. What it fails to recognize is that this is a much bigger issue than their cover-ups, payoffs, and excuses. The media is supposed to be a watchdog for abuses of power. Reporting on the behavior of alleged serial predators is more than news. It's an act of social good," she wrote in The Daily Beast.Insider has contacted NBC for comment.Read more:Amazon Australia isn't selling Ronan Farrow's new book on the #MeToo movement after apparent legal threats from the National Enquirer's former editorMatt Lauer is facing a new allegation that he exposed himself to a co-worker at NBC, who says the network paid her six-figures to keep quiet These are all the celebrities who knew about Harvey Weinstein's treatment of women before it was reported in the press, according to Ronan Farrow's new bookRonan Farrow says Harvey Weinstein used his relationship with Hillary Clinton to try to kill his expos about the now-disgraced movie producerJoin the conversation about this storyNOW WATCH: Nxivm leader Keith Raniere has been convicted. Here's what happened inside his sex-slave ring that recruited actresses and two billionaire heiresses.
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