Four new women accuse Tony Robbins of sexual misconduct in BuzzFeed News investigation




 

Self-help guru Tony Robbins is facing four new allegations of sexual misconduct, the result of a BuzzFeed News investigation published Wednesday.

Four women have stepped forward according to Wednesday's report - three former followers and a personal assistant - saying Robbins groped them, exposed himself or made unwanted advances during the 1980s, 1990s and early 2000s.

BuzzFeed News filed an initial lengthy report last week, based on a yearlong investigation, in which former fans and staffers accused Robbins, 59, of sexual misconduct.

Robbins responded to the original report by posting an open letter on Twitter Friday, referring to the BuzzFeed investigation and first report as an "inaccurate, agenda-driven version of the past, pierced with falsehoods."

Robbins' lawyers also disputed the story, telling Buzzfeed News in a statement that Robbins "absolutely denies" each of the allegations and "specifically denies that he engaged in any of the alleged conduct" with accusers, who never filed "any type of verbal or written complaint" with his company.

In a YouTube video posted Wednesday, Robbins accused BuzzFeed of "flat-out lying." But he added that he was a "better human being than I was in my 20s and 30s""

"I'm not perfect, I never claimed to be. I'm perfectly committed to growing," he said, apologizing for "anything I have ever said or ever done" that offended or hurt anyone.

More: Self-help guru Tony Robbins accused of sexual misconduct, berating victims of rape

The four women in Wednesday's report include Kimberly Stokes, a live-in personal assistant who started working for Robbins in 1988. She claims Robbins walked into her bathroom while she was showering and "dropped his towel," exposing himself. Stokes said that she had already rebuffed his advances once before.

Sophiah Koikas said that Robbins pulled her hand onto his crotch to feel his penis and groped her breast at a Hawaii self-help seminar in the 1990s. "It freaked me out. ... I tried to pull my hand away as fast as I could, but he had a grip on my hand so tight and he wouldn't let go," she said.

Mary Lantz claimed that Robbins sexually harassed her at an event she attended in Ohio around 1990, saying: "Will you come and sit in the front row of my seminar every time? Because you're driving me crazy."

Lantz told BuzzFeed she remembered Robbins pulling her toward him in a hug, kissing her on the cheek and wrapping his arm around her so that he was cupping the side of her breast "in front of thousands of people."

Lucie Galvez claimed that Robbins asked her "sexually inappropriate" questions during an interview for a personal assistant job in 2001."I remember him asking me, 'How do you feel about nudity?' and I thought, Okay, this is taking an odd turn," Galvez said.

A statement released Thursday from Robbins' spokesperson Jennifer Connelly said, "Tony Robbins has never behaved in the reckless and malicious manner suggested by the false and unfounded allegations published by BuzzFeed. BuzzFeed has manipulated facts and sourcing to present a false and one-sided negative narrative supporting its predetermined agenda to use Mr. Robbins as a convenient celebrity target. What BuzzFeed has published is unsubstantiated and sensationalized tabloid journalism largely relying on alleged events from 20-30 years ago."

Last spring, leaked video emerged of Robbins calling the #MeToo movement an excuse for some women to "try and get significance" by "attacking and destroying someone else." He later apologized.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Four new women accuse Tony Robbins of sexual misconduct in BuzzFeed News investigation

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