CBS's Jeff Fager: 60 Minutes producer out amid #MeToo claims

'60 Minutes' executive producer Jeff Fager out at CBS

CBS News reporter Jericka Duncan said Thursday she felt threatened when "60 Minutes" boss Jeff Fager sent her a text message to "be careful" when she questioned him about reports that he tolerated an abusive environment at the newsmagazine.

It was then noted: 'However, he violated company policy and it is our commitment to uphold those policies at every level'.

Duncan revealed the contents of the text message on the "CBS Evening News" on Wednesday, "since Jeff Fager publicly referred to our exchange today".

"It's even hard to say that today because, yes, we do receive harsh language all the time, but this is someone who held an enormous amount of power here, who I respected, and I was shocked", Duncan said.

A day later, the network released the text message and provided some context. She attempted to reach out to get his side of the story regarding the sexual misconduct allegations raised in a series of articles from the New Yorker, reports the Washington Post.

"This is an outrageous claim and it didn't happen", Fager said in response.

CBS News itself surfaced the text messaging on Wednesday night as part of its package on Fager's firing.

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Of his social-media commentators, he added: "I tried to reply to these people but they just don't listen". There is a lot of unhappiness in the umpiring community because no one is standing up for officials.

In this 2017 photo, "60 Minutes" Executive Producer Jeff Fager poses for a photo at the "60 Minutes" offices, in NY.

Moonves and Fager were the subjects of a recent investigation by Ronan Farrow of The New Yorker into sexual misconduct at CBS. He stood up too, taking her by the shoulders and telling her, "I can't let you leave like this".

CBS News president David Rhodes announced Fager's exit in a note to staff Wednesday. Rhodes was then brought in as news president, taking over full management of the news division when Fager went back to exclusively running "60 Minutes".

Veteran "60 Minutes" correspondent Steve Kroft called Fager's message to Duncan threatening and inappropriate.

Think of all the people and institutions that winced, wailed and/or wilted under the accountability furnished by the celebrated newsmagazine "60 Minutes". "Bill Owens will manage the 60 Minutes team as Ingrid Ciprian-Matthews and I begin the search for a new executive producer of the program". Now, with more serious allegations against the fallen CBS exec making headlines, Chen has not issued a statement on her current stance.

"The company's decision had nothing to do with the false allegations printed in The New Yorker", the statement reads.

When the New Yorker first reported that six women were accusing Moonves of harassment or assault in July, several directors bought his pleas that the claims in the story were "grossly overstated" or lies, according to the paper.

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