Ryan Seacrest has been accused of sexual abuse and harassment by former personal stylist Suzie Hardy in a new report from Variety. Hardy told the publication that while she served as Seacrest’s stylist on “E! News” from 2006 to 2013 she was subject to “years of unwanted sexual aggression.” Hardy alleges Seacrest rubbed his erect penis against her while wearing underwear and groped her vagina, among other unwanted physical harassment. When reached for comment by Variety, Seacrest denied Hardy’s allegations.
According to Hardy, she endured the alleged abuse for years so that she could keep her job and provide for her daughter. After Hardy reported the abuse to E!’s human resources department in 2013, her employment was quickly terminated. Hardy’s attorney sent Seacrest and E! Network a letter last November threatening to take legal action if they didn’t “come up with a plan to address the treatment of all women at the networks and to take responsibility for the wrongful treatment” of Hardy.
Seacrest tried to get ahead ahead of the news on November 17 when he made a public statement revealing E! was investigating a sexual misconduct complaint made again him. Seacrest at that time said “someone that worked as a wardrobe stylist for me nearly a decade ago” was behind the complaint and he called the claims “reckless allegations.” E! issued a statement three months later saying that its investigation had concluded. The company found “insufficient evidence to support the claims against Seacrest.”
Variety obtained both the letter and interviewed Hardy about Seacrest’s alleged behavior. According to Hardy, Seacrest would ask her to be present around him during times when it was obvious her work wasn’t needed. One time in 2007 Hardy was in Seacrest’s dressing room and he was only wearing underwear. Seacrest allegedly wrapped Hardy in what she calls a “bear guy” and did not let go until his assistant walked in. Hardy wrote in the letter that Seacrest hugged her in his underwear more than 10 times throughout their working relationship.
In 2008, Seacrest allegedly slid his hand under Hardy’s crotch while the two were walking to the “E! News” set. Hardy said Seacrest slid his hand in from behind her when she wasn’t looking and “cupped her crotch.” According to the letter, Seacrest asked her, “Oh my god, are you going to sue me?” to which Hardy responded, “Not if I stay employed.”
Another incident occurred in Seacrest’s suite at the Roosevelt Hotel. Hardy was on location helping Seacrest dress for the 2013 Academy Awards. Seacrest allegedly had a visible erection when Hardy was in the room and proceeded to grab Hardy, throw her onto the hotel bed, climb on top of her, and rub his erection against her. Hardy’s co-worker was in the room and yelled at Seacrest to stop. The co-worker verified the story to Variety. Hardy’s letter also alleges Seacrest grabbed her vagina once on the “E! News” set.
Hardy attempted to report the abuse to E! but was told her employment would end one week after the Oscars. She never had contact with Seacrest again.