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Morgan Freeman Releases Statement On Sexual Harassment Claims

As you probably know by now, Morgan Freeman has been accused of sexual harassment by 16 different women. The actor has been accused of everything from trying to lift a set assistant’s skirt and inquiring about her underwear, to making sexually charged comments about staff members’ breasts and buttocks.

Granted, sexual misconduct includes a spectrum of inappropriate and intimidating behavior toward women and can include everything from harassment to outright rape. None of it is justified or okay for any reason.

But Freeman wants it to be perfectly clear that while he is a flawed individual who may not always make the best decisions around women…he is definitely nobody’s Cosby or Weinstein with it.

In a statement given through his publicist Stan Rosenfield, Morgan let it be known in clear terms that his allegations are NOT inclusive of him physically forcing himself on or sexually coercing any woman in any way:

“I am devastated that 80 years of my life is at risk of being undermined, in the blink of an eye, by Thursday’s media reports.

All victims of assault and harassment deserve to be heard. And we need to listen to them. But it is not right to equate horrific incidents of sexual assault with misplaced compliments or humor.

I admit that I am someone who feels a need to try to make women—and men—feel appreciated and at ease around me. As a part of that, I would often try to joke with and compliment women, in what I thought was a light-hearted and humorous way.

Clearly I was not always coming across the way I intended. And that is why I apologized Thursday and will continue to apologize to anyone I might have upset, however unintentionally.

But I also want to be clear: I did not create unsafe work environments. I did not assault women. I did not offer employment or advancement in exchange for sex. Any suggestion that I did so is completely false.”

Thus far, no accusation of unwanted sexual contact with Freeman has been reported. He’s only been accused of making comments and jokes that made women very uncomfortable.

A CNN Entertainment reporter compiled a few examples of Morgan’s “inappropriate” behavior around entertainment reporters, including an instance in which she says that he looked her pregnant body up and down suggestively and said “boy do I wish I was there.” Check out this account of Morgan’s “misconduct” during promotional junkets:

Now…is it just us, or was he not referring to her or her body in that second clip whatsoever? Your thoughts?

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