A new report this week outlined numerous alleged incidents of Don Lemon treating women poorly at CNN that have occurred for over a decade.
Variety reported that the first alleged incident began in 2008 when he was hosting CNN’s “Live From” with Kyra Phillips. Tensions between the two had increased “for months” before reaching a boiling point when Phillips got an assignment that Lemon wanted.
Lemon “vented his disappointment at being passed over by tearing up pictures and notes on top of and inside Phillips’ desk in the news pod they shared,” the report said, according to sources who worked at CNN at the time.
The report said that after Phillips returned from the assignment, she received a text message from an anonymous number that said, “Now you’ve crossed the line, and you’re going to pay for it.” The messages were later “traced back to Lemon,” the report said.
Lemon called one of the female producers fat to her face, the report alleged. He also reportedly mocked then-CNN anchor Nancy Grace while on air, which supposedly offended some at the network.
Lemon also reportedly had issues with then CNN-anchor Soledad O’Brien after she was named as host of the network’s “Black in America” docuseries. Lemon reportedly said during an editorial call that she was not black.
O’Brien told Variety, “Don has long had a habit of saying idiotic and inaccurate things, so it sounds pretty on brand for him.”
The report said that former colleagues complained about him annoying them with “diva-like behavior.”
One woman that CNN spoke to complained that the network quit putting her on air after she criticized Lemon while another woman claimed that Lemon changed over time into someone who “likes fame, likes power. He was no longer the same person.”
Lemon got in trouble earlier this year after a spat with the two female co-hosts who he works with on “CNN This Morning.” He was also criticized for saying that 51-year-old Nikki Haley was “past her prime.”