CNN announced Tuesday that Chris Cuomo would be suspended “indefinitely” following bombshell evidence that he worked closely with his brother, disgraced former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, amid allegations of sexual assault.
“The New York Attorney General’s office released transcripts and exhibits Monday that shed new light on Chris Cuomo’s involvement in his brother’s defense,” a CNN spokesperson said Tuesday, according to CNN. “The documents, which we were not privy to before their public release, raise serious questions.”
“When Chris admitted to us that he had offered advice to his brother’s staff, he broke our rules and we acknowledged that publicly,” CNN continued. “But we also appreciate the unique position he was in and understood his need to put family first and job second. However, these documents point to a greater level of involvement in his brother’s efforts than we previously knew.”
“As a result, we have suspended Chris indefinitely, pending further evaluation.”
Anderson Cooper will anchor the 9 p.m. slot on Tuesday, the CNN spokesperson said.
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The documents released by New York Attorney General Letitia James included text messages and transcripts of interviews with investigators who led the probe into allegations against the governor.
The cache of documents included text messages between Chris Cuomo and Melissa DeRosa, a then-top aide to Gov. Andrew Cuomo, that suggested he was instrumental in working to craft a defense against a flood of sexual misconduct allegations.
The text messages also revealed that Chris Cuomo sought to use his connections in the press to help prepare the then-governor’s team as accusers started to make their stories public.
Chris Cuomo also acknowledged to investigators that he did attempt to learn more about a story by journalist Ronan Farrow. The anchor defended the practice as conventional.
“The idea of one reporter calling another to find out about what’s coming down the pipe is completely business-as-usual,” he said.
When Andrew Cuomo resigned as governor in August, Chris Cuomo told CNN viewers that he was “not an advisor,” but “a brother.” He acknowledged that he talked with his brother’s aides and gave his “take” until CNN told him to stop doing so in May.
The “Cuomo Prime Time” anchor also said on the air in August, “I never attacked nor encouraged anyone to attack any woman who came forward. I never made calls to the press about my brother’s situation.”
Monday’s revelations cast some doubt on his statement about his interactions with the press.
“I would — when asked, I would reach out to sources, other journalists, to see if they had heard of anybody else coming out,” Chris Cuomo said during testimony.
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