NPR host John Hockenberry accused of sexual harassment ‘horrified’ Because of his Activities
Former public radio star John Hockenberry said Saturday that he is horrified at the thought that he made people feel uneasy after being accused of sexual harassment.
The 61-year-old Emmy winner stated in reaction to claims by author Suki Kim, who reported Hockenberry peppered her with odd and suggestive emails and made unwanted sexual advances toward three other ladies.
Hockenberry, who is married with five kids, said in a statement that he “had a reputation for being demanding, and certainly I’ve been rude, aggressive and impolite.”
Hockenberry hosted WNYC’s “The Takeaway.”
Hockenberry hosted WNYC’s “The Takeaway” from 2008 until earlier this season.
Along with the show, Hockenberry is a successful author and has hosted shows on MSNBC. His memoir, “Moving Violations: War Zones, Wheelchairs, and Declarations of Independence,” was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award.
The radio host was paralyzed from the waist down following an accident in 1976.
“It horrifies me that I made the talented and driven individuals I worked with feel uneasy and that the anxiety around putting together a fantastic show was made worse by my behavior,” he said Saturday. “Having to take care of my physical limitations have given me an understanding of powerlessness, and I should have been more mindful of how the power I wielded above others, coupled with improper opinions and communications, might be construed. I don’t have any excuses.”
Hockenberry sent her emails
Hockenberry sent her emails following her look that made her uneasy, requesting her home address and entitling a subject line: “Need another dose of you,” she wrote in an article printed on one website.
On her birthday she claims he asked her, “Let me know when I am I bugging you or out you?”
Kim writes that three new girls told her Hockenberry’s behavior ranged from unwanted kisses to gross sexual remarks and touching.
She also claims that Hockenberry forced out three African-American female co-hosts that he soured on.
“You shouldn’t stay here just as a ‘diversity hire,’ ” he told one girl, according to Kim. “And you ought to go lose weight.”