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Former NBC staffer accuses Matt Lauer of in-office sexual assault; Lauer breaks his silence

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A former NBC staffer told the New York Times that former  NBC host Matt Lauer — whom NBC fired Wednesday for inappropriate sexual conduct — had sex with her in his office until she passed out.

The alleged incident occurred in 2001.

How did it begin?

The woman — who wished to remain anonymous — alleged that Lauer first began making advances in the 1990s when they were working together in NBC's New York City office.

She recounted an incident when the two were traveling together, noting that Lauer was sitting "uncomfortably close" to her during a ride to the airport.

The woman said that when she began to inch away from him, he replied, "You're no fun."

She added that Lauer, over dinner, would ask her inappropriate questions, such as whether she'd ever cheated on her husband.

What is Lauer accused of?

During the alleged 2001 incident, the woman said that Lauer summoned her into his office and locked the door behind her.

Lauer purportedly told her to unbutton her shirt as he stepped out from behind his desk.

According to the woman's account, Lauer bent her over a chair and began having sex. She told the Times that she lost consciousness during the encounter.

The woman told the Times that she woke up a short time later on the floor of his office. She added that Lauer's assistant had to take her to a nurse to seek care.

The woman said she did not report the incident to her employer because she felt shame over the purported incident and because she felt helpless over the idea of potentially losing her job at the network.

She told the Times that she made her then-husband aware of the alleged incident at the time and told a friend a few years later.

The Times reported they were able to confirm the reporting of the incident with both the woman's ex-husband and friend.

Has Lauer said anything yet?

Lauer expressed his remorse over the scandal in a statement Thursday, which said:

There are no words to express my sorrow and regret for the pain I have caused others by words and actions. To the people I have hurt, I am truly sorry. As I am writing this, I realize the depth of the damage and disappointment I have left behind at home and at NBC. Some of what is being said about me is untrue or mischaracterized, but there is enough truth in these stories to make me feel embarrassed and ashamed. I regret that my shame is now shared by the people I cherish dearly. Repairing the damage will take a lot of time and soul-searching, and I’m committed to beginning that effort. It is now my full-time job. The last two days have forced me to take a very hard look at my own troubling flaws. It’s been humbling. I am blessed to be surrounded by people I love. I thank them for their patience and grace.
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