Mario Batali Won’t Face NYC Sexual Assault Charges
Celebrity chef Mario Batali will not face multiple charges in New York City for two alleged sexual assault cases.
The New York City Police Department told CNN on Wednesday that it has “no open cases” into the former ABC co-host and chef from “The Chew,” after opening up two investigations into alleged sexual misconduct by Batali.
The investigations began following an article in December 2017 on the news website Eater, in which four different women claimed the former TV host had “touched them inappropriately in a pattern of behavior that appears to span at least two decades.” (RELATED: Mario Batali Backs Away From Restaurant Empire After Four Sexual Misconduct Allegations)
Soon after, ABC announced it had cut ties with him from its talk show and the Food Network announced that they would not be airing his cooking program “Molto Mario.”
According to TMZ, authorities closed both cases after investigators couldn’t find any other witnesses or evidence to back the claims made by the multiple accusers. Last March, a woman filed a police report claiming she was raped by the celebrity chef at his West Village eatery in 2004.
Other sexual misconduct allegations came to light when another woman said, during her appearance on “60 Minutes,” that Batali allegedly assaulted her in 2005 at his restaurant.
Shortly after news broke that no charges would be filed, a former employee at his restaurant, Trish Nelson, challenged others to speak out.
“Where are the other members of Mario’s entourage? Have they been questioned? He loved to show off for his industry friends and make the female service staff in all of their establishments the butt of his jokes and the objects of his sexual desire and unwarranted advances,” Nelson told CNN in a statement.
“I know for a fact that there are other sexual assault victims out there,” she added. “In order for them to muster the strength to come forward, they desperately need these witnesses and industry leaders to gather their integrity and finally step up to the plate.”
Batali “vehemently” has denied any allegations of sexual assault.