One month after E! concluded its investigation into Ryan Seacrest, the TV host is being accused of sexual harassment by his former stylist, per a new Variety story Monday.
According to Variety's report, Suzie Hardy, a single mother who worked as Seacrest’s personal stylist for E! News in 2007, was subjected to unwanted touching by the talk show host, per a November letter from Hardy’s attorney addressed to E! and obtained by the outlet.
The story alleges that "Seacrest subjected Hardy to years of unwanted sexual aggression — grinding his erect penis against her while clad only in his underwear, groping her vagina, and at one point slapping her buttock so hard that it left a large welt still visible hours later."
Variety published the letter following E!'s conclusion of the network's investigation into Hardy's claims, deciding that
Hardy claimed the most egregious offense happened in 2010 on the set of E! News, when Seacrest asked Hardy, "Have you (expletive) him yet?” about a new boyfriend, and when Hardy rebuffed his question, Seacrest allegedly reached over and grabbed her vagina.
Additionally, Hardy told Variety that she endured the abuse for years before reporting Seacrest's actions to human resources and, two weeks later, was told that her employment at E! News had ended.
“I was very proud to say ‘No, I don’t [have a physical relationship with Seacrest],’” she said. “I never touched him, I never kissed him, I never f–ked him, nothing. But I said, ‘But he touched me.’”
Variety's story follows E! ending the network's previous investigation into Hardy's claims, concluding the allegations could not be substantiated.
"E! has now concluded the investigation into allegations regarding Ryan Seacrest," the cable network said in a statement released Thursday. "The investigation, conducted by outside counsel, found insufficient evidence to substantiate allegations against Seacrest. E! is committed to providing a safe working environment where everyone is treated with respect and dignity."
Seacrest, in a statement to USA TODAY in November, said: "Recently, someone that worked as a wardrobe stylist for me nearly a decade ago at E! News, came forward with a complaint suggesting I behaved inappropriately toward her."
He added, “If I made her feel anything but respected, I am truly sorry. I dispute these reckless allegations and I plan to cooperate with any corporate inquiries that may result. I treat all my colleagues with kindness, dignity, and understanding, as this is a principle that’s core to who I am."
USA TODAY has contacted Seacrest's representatives for comment.
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