Addie Zinone Collins, a former Today show staffer who accused Matt Lauer of an “abuse of power” in their consensual affair, on Thursday slammed the disgraced ex-anchor’s open letter bashing his rape accuser Brooke Nevils.
Calling the letter “an attempt to manipulate and control the narrative for his own gain,” Collins railed against the “seeming lack of contrition, misstatements, and threatening tone is an attempt to manipulate and control the narrative for his own gain.” She added: “He is determined to undermine and tarnish the reputation of the brave women who courageously come forward.”
Collins wrote a 2017 Variety article detailing an alleged month-long affair with Lauer in 2000 when she was a 24-year-old production assistant. Excerpts from Ronan Farrow’s new book, Catch and Kill, released Wednesday morning, revealed a new accusation that Lauer anally raped Nevils in a hotel room at the Sochi Olympics in 2014.
In her open letter, Collins said that, like Nevils, she told her story to Farrow to “validate the accusations of others.” “Please do not confuse my willingness to speak up, however, with fearlessness,” she wrote. “I’m petrified and humiliated that the world knows the intimate details of the experience.” Collins has previously said that while her relationship with Lauer was consensual, the affair had a negative effect on her life and career.