Ousted Fox News Anchor Ed Henry Denies Sexual Misconduct Allegations
Ousted Fox News anchor Ed Henry has denied the sexual misconduct allegations against him and insisted he will be fully vindicated.
Henry, 48, posted a statement from his attorney Catherine Foti on Twitter Wednesday evening, just hours after the network announced his firing.
'Attorney Catherine Foti: "Ed Henry denies the allegations referenced in the Fox announcement and is confident that he will be vindicated after a full hearing in an appropriate forum,"' he tweeted.
Fox News announced Wednesday it had dismissed the America's Newsroom host after receiving a complaint from a former employee accusing the top news anchor of willful sexual misconduct in the workplace 'years ago'.
The allegations surfaced as Henry was rebuilding his career following a four-month leave of absence in 2016 due to an alleged extra-marital affair with a Las Vegas cocktail waitress.
The father-of-two took a break to work on his marriage to NPR's Chief Washington Editor Shirley Hung after Natalia Lima, 42, revealed she had a ten-month affair with Henry between 2015 and February 2016.
Ousted Fox News anchor Ed Henry denied the sexual misconduct allegations against him and insisted he will be fully vindicated on Twitter Wednesday evening
Henry, 48, posted a statement from his attorney Catherine Foti on Twitter Wednesday evening, just hours after the network announced his firing after receiving a complaint from a former employee accusing the top news anchor of willful sexual misconduct in the workplace 'years ago'
In a memo to all staff Wednesday morning, FOX News Media CEO Suzanne Scott and FOX News Media President and Executive Editor Jay Wallace said they received a complaint from the attorney of a former employee on June 25 accusing Henry of sexual misconduct in the workplace.
The memo said the alleged misconduct took place 'years ago' but did not specify when.
It added that Henry had been suspended the same day the complaint was received pending investigation.
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An outside investigator was hired and, based on the results of that probe, Fox fired Henry, one of the network's most prominent journalists.
'We would like to bring a very serious matter to your attention in an effort toward full transparency given the actions we have taken to improve the culture here over the past four years,' the memo read.
'FOX New Media strictly prohibits all forms of sexual harassment, misconduct and discrimination. We will continue striving to maintain a safe an inclusive workplace for all employees'.
Ed Henry and his wife Shirley Hung, pictured, married in 2010 after meeting while they both worked in CNN. In May 2016, a Vegas cocktail waitress revealed she had an affair with Henry
Natalia Lima, 42, said she began an affair with Henry in 2011. She broke the news in 2016, causing Henry to take a four-month leave of absence to mend his relationship with his wife
America's Newsroom will now have rotating co-hosts joining Sandra Smith until a permanent replacement is named. Henry had served as co-anchor since December of last year.
Henry worked as a late morning news anchor on Fox, between the hours of 9am and 12pm and was considered a rising star.
He joined Fox in 2011 and covered the Obama administration as Fox's chief White House correspondent after starting out his career with Roll Call and at CNN between 2004 and 2011.
Henry continued at the helm of much of the network's coverage of Hillary Clinton's campaign in 2016 before being sidelined over a tabloid scandal.
He had slowly rebuilt his career following a four-month leave of absence, which ended in 2016, after there were published reports of an extramarital affair that he conducted with Vegas cocktail waitress Lima.
In May 2016, Lima spoke out about her ten-month affair after she met the political journalist at a Las Vegas gentleman's club.
Ed Henry and Shirley Henry pictured (center) in 2012 before his affair
This photo of Lima taken at the Sapphire Pool & Day Club - a sister venue which adjoins Sapphire Las Vegas strip club where Lima met
A close friend told Daily Mail Online that Lima is a celebrity stylist and a 'good Christian girl', denying any knowledge of a connection to Sapphire club
Lima performed steamy $2,000-an-hour routines for Henry in a private VIP 'Skybox' at Sapphire Las Vegas strip club before they engaged in a secret love affair at luxury hotels when the veteran newsman visited Sin City.
Lima revealed their affair, forcing Henry to take time off work in a bid to mend his relationship with his wife Shirley Hung, who was then NPR's Deputy Washington Editor.
The couple married in 2010 after meeting while they both worked in CNN. They have two children together, Mila and Patrick.
Lima claimed that she and Henry first met in 2011, shortly after the newsman married his wife at Las Vegas' Wynn Hotel, but only embarked on an affair in 2015.
'Whenever he was in town, we would pretty much just have sex. He has a really high sex drive,' Lima told In Touch magazine, stating that they first stayed in touch over social media.
She alleged that the pair even slept together in the hotel where he had married his wife.
Lima said she was left devastated when he broke it off in February 2016 - and felt 'used' by Henry when she revealed the affair four months later.
The reports of the affair caused former Fox CEO Roger Ailes to publicly rebuke him, stating that 'this raises serious questions about Ed's lack of judgment, especially given his position as a journalist'.
Ailes was also later forced out of Fox News when he was accused of sexual assault and harassment by numerous women, including former Fox hosts Megyn Kelly and Gretchen Carlson.
On Henry's return, he shifted to the position of chief national correspondent, often appearing as a co-host on Fox & Friends Weekend before taking over America's Newsroom last December.
Fox offered no details of the complaint that resulted in Henry's firing, only to say that it happened 'years ago'.
According to Lawyer Douglas H. Wigdor told the that he was representing the former employee in the case but did not comment of Henry's dismissal.
The latest revelation comes after Fox had attempted to comeback from sexual assault and harassment cases that rocked the network and resulted in several high-profile departures from those accused and the people accusing them.
In their memo Wednesday, company bosses said that they 'encourage any employee who has a sexual harassment, discrimination or misconduct complaint of any form to report it immediately'.
After Ailes' departure, the network has gone some way to changing its culture under the guidance of new CEO Suzanne Scott.
In the past, Henry's departure and the internal investigation into the allegations would not have been made in a public fashion.
Fox founder Roger Ailes, who died in 2017, was accused of harassment by female employees
Former Fox star Bill O'Reilly left the network after his own sexual harassment scandal. The dismissal of O'Reilly and Ailes sparked an attempt by Fox to change its workplace culture
Former FOX hosts Megyn Kelly, left, and Gretchen Carlson, right, accused Fox founder Roger Ailes of sexual harassment and he was ousted by the company
Ailes and former Fox prime-time star Bill O'Reilly were previous ousted from the network over claims of sexual misconduct.
O'Reilly left the network in 2017 after it was revealed that several women received financial settlements after claiming he harassed them.
In May 2017, it was also revealed that O'Reilly's ex-wife claimed in an affidavit filed during the couple's divorce proceedings that the disgraced host physically assaulted her when she found him having phone sex.
Two of the women who received settlements after accusing O'Reilly of harassment, Andrea Mackris and Juliet Ruddy, stated that they believed he was masturbating when he called them up for unwanted phone sex conversations.
In 2019, the movie Bombshell was released based on the sexual harassment allegations made by Fox News female employees against network founder Ailes.
Kelly has claimed that Ailes, who died in May 2017, sexually harassed her multiple times during her tenure at Fox News, including trying to force her to kiss him on the lips.
She left Fox News in January 2017, making her debut at NBC in June of that year, where she was said to earn a reported $15 to $20million a year but her contract was terminated two years later.
Her former co-worker Carlson filed a sexual harassment lawsuit against Ailes in July 2016, claiming she was fired for refusing his advances.
She signed an NDA as part of her reported $20million out of court settlement with the network.
Ed Henry Fired By Fox News After ‘Sexual Misconduct' Allegation - Variety
Fox News Fires Ed Henry Over Sexual Misconduct Claim - The New York Times
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