Two women came forward with accusations against Tyson in a piece published by Patheos on Thursday. One woman is an astronomer, Dr. Katelyn N. Allers, Associate Professor of Physics and Astronomy at Bucknell University, while the other, Ashley Watson, is a former assistant of Tyson. Watson alleges that Tyson attempted to pressure her into sex and had "predatory tendencies." Watson, who says she had to quit her job after multiple inappropriate sexual advances from Tyson, also says that the astrophysicist made "misogynistic comments."
"We have only just become aware of the recent allegations regarding Neil deGrasse Tyson. We take these matters very seriously and we are reviewing the recent reports," Fox and National Geographic said via a statement, per THC.
Dr. Allers alleges she was "felt up" by Tyson at an event in 2009, saying: “My experience with him is he’s not someone who has great respect for female bodily autonomy.” Another woman, musician Tchiya Amet, has previously alleged that she was raped by Tyson while they were graduate school students.
"The credo at the heart of COSMOS is to follow the evidence wherever it leads. The producers of COSMOS can do no less in this situation. We are committed to a thorough investigation of this matter and to act accordingly as soon as it is concluded," the producers of Cosmos said in a statement.
Tyson addressed the comments via a lengthy post on his Facebook. "I’ve recently been publically accused of sexual misconduct," he wrote. "These accusations have received a fair amount of press in the past forty-eight hours, unaccompanied by my reactions. In many cases, it’s not the media’s fault. I declined comment on the grounds that serious accusations should not be adjudicated in the press. But clearly I cannot continue to stay silent." He concluded by saying, "I’m the accused, so why believe anything I say? Why believe me at all?"
A sequel to Tyson's 2014 Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey series, which aired on PBS, is being rebooted by Fox and National Geographic. It's scheduled to premiere in 2019.