"As proud as I am and as strong as a woman as I am, as smart as I am and as much work as I've done with therapists, it really affected me," Hardy told the outlet, claiming there were numerous incidents of harassment and assault while working with Seacrest and E! News from 2007-2013. "I've seen every shrink in town."
Variety reports they obtained a letter from Hardy’s attorney, which was allegedly written last November and addressed to cable channel E!, its corporate parent NBCUniveral and Seacrest. According to the outlet, Hardy alleged that Seacrest subjected her 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."
After the article was published, Seacrest's lawyer released the following statement to ET:
"It is upsetting to us that VARIETY is electing to run a 'story' about untrue allegations that were made against my client, after they were told that the accuser threatened to make those false claims against him unless he paid her $15 million. At that time, the claimant threatened to issue a demonstrably false press statement unless she was paid. Instead, my client proactively and publicly denied the claims and agreed to fully cooperate with E!'s investigation about the matter.
On January 31st, the network notified us that their independent third-party investigation had concluded that there was insufficient evidence to support her claims, effectively, clearing my client's name.
It's telling that after my client refused to pay her money, and the E! investigation resulted as it did, that she is now coming forward to share her debunked story to the press."
"E!’s investigation was extremely comprehensive and thorough. Over the course of a two month process, our outside counsel interviewed more than two dozen people regarding the allegations, including multiple separate meetings with the claimant and all firsthand witnesses that she provided. The investigator is an attorney with nearly 20 years experience and is highly regarded professionally. Any claims that question the legitimacy of this investigation are completely baseless," an E! Spokesperson told ET in a statement.
In November, Seacrest denied Hardy's allegations in a statement of his own.
"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. If I made her feel anything but respected, I am truly sorry," Seacrest said in the statement. "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."
"Throughout my 25 years in the entertainment industry, the majority of my co-workers have been women, and I’ve endeavored to foster a positive work environment of mutual respect and courtesy, as that’s how I believe it should be," he continued. "I’m distraught that anyone or any situation would call that into question. I’m proud of my workplace reputation, and believe my track record will speak for itself. I’m an advocate for women. I will continue to support their voices."
"In November, I received a letter from a lawyer representing a former show stylist. She claimed that I mistreated her more than a decade ago when we worked together," Seacrest wrote at the time. "This arrived during an unprecedented public reckoning by women in our industry and beyond, courageously coming forward to share their stories, many of them heartbreaking. These women sought to bring attention to the systemic gender inequality that has occurred for decades. I was -- and am -- amazed at their bravery."
"To have my workplace conduct questioned was gut-wrenching," he continued. "I've always aimed to treat all of my colleagues with honesty, respect, kindness and compassion. Yet, I knew, regardless of the confidence I had that there was no merit to the allegations, my name would likely soon appear on the lists of those suspected of despicable words and deeds. The pressures of our overflowing newsfeeds would insist on it."