Published: Thu, September 13, 2018
Arts&Culture | By Matthew Castillo

'60 Minutes' Executive Producer Jeff Fager to Step Down Amid Controversy

'60 Minutes' Executive Producer Jeff Fager to Step Down Amid Controversy

The long-time producer of the CBS News show 60 minutes, Jeff Fager, is leaving his job "immediately" amid claims that he sexually harassed colleagues.

"This action today is not directly related to the allegations surfaced in press reports, which continue to be investigated independently".

The specific violation involved a text message that Fager sent to Jericka Duncan, one of the CBS reporters who has been covering the fallout from Farrow's reporting.

Fager was let go Wednesday amid growing pressure from sexual harassment allegations from multiple women as reporter by Ronan Farrow in the New Yorker. CEO Leslie Moonves on Sunday.

Fager, who has denied the claims of harassment, released a statement confirming he was sacked because "I sent a text message to one of our CBS reporters" over her coverage of newer allegations against him that The New Yorker published Sunday.

In a statement to CNN's Brian Stelter, Fager again denied the allegations in The New Yorker, calling them "false" and saying they were not the reason for his exit. "One such note should not result in termination after 36 years, but it did", Fager said.

According to a note president of CBS News David Rhodes sent out to employees, Bill Owens will manage 60 Minutes in Fager's absence. Rhodes was then brought in as news president, taking over full management of the news division when Fager went back to exclusively running "60 Minutes". "This whole situation saddens me deeply". He initially resisted, but relented after CBS warned that he was contractually obligated to cooperate fully in any investigation.

On Sunday, The New Yorker reported that a new accuser said "she "felt compelled to speak because she simply 'can't believe [Fager is] back there.'" The article described her as "a producer who was an intern at CBS" in the early 2000s who said that "he groped her at a work party".

A representative for Fager said he had no further comment on Wednesday night. "His magic is in the screening room, as was Don Hewitt's", says a "60 Minutes" staffer who declined to be named.

Fager once kept on his office wall a framed remnant of a curtain stained by a cup of coffee thrown at him by the late correspondent Morley Safer when the two worked together. He recently wrote a book to commemorate the broadcast's 50th anniversary. Glor pointed this out on Wednesday's newscast: "In less than a year", he said, "three of the most powerful men in broadcasting" - Fager, Moonves and Rose - "all accused of sexual misconduct, have either been fired or resigned".

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