Addie Collins Zinone was a 24-year-old production assistant on the "TODAY" show when she says she participated in a consensual relationship with disgraced anchor Matt Lauer, fired by NBC for sexual misconduct.
Zinone spoke candidly with Megyn Kelly about how it all started. With one month left at the "TODAY" show, Zinone says Lauer sent her complimentary messages about her appearance. A few weeks later, after asking Lauer for professional advice, the two had lunch. Very quickly Zinone knew the conversation had veered off topic. Later that day, Lauer invited Zinone to his dressing room, where they had a sexual encounter.
She emphasized that it was consensual, but is now noting that Lauer's behavior was an "abuse of power." She felt "isolated," "confused," and full of "shame." The whole episode left her convinced she was not his only target.
"He did it so effortlessly with me I thought for sure there had to be other women," she said.
She didn't, however, know there were other colleagues.
Another of Lauer's alleged victims says she's "terrified" that her identity will be revealed, according to her lawyer.
Zinone said that when she heard about Lauer's firing, she felt "comfort" that justice was being served and that she wasn't alone, but also fearful about the media onslaught that would ensue, especially since she had already spoken about her relationship in the past. Some of those calls came while she was on the playground with her children. She has even received death threats for coming forward.
Yet, she feels compelled to speak out and share these "embarrassing details" in order to "validate" the other victims' stories.