This week well-known journalist Touré was accused of workplace sexual harassment by a makeup artist, following his contributions to the Lifetime docuseries Surviving R. Kelly. He has since issued a response to the allegation.
As Essence reports, in a post advertising Touré’s appearance on the Clubhouse With Mouse Jones podcast, a makeup artist named Dani wrote:
“Every Monday I used to work with him on a show in 2017 and he couldn’t stop asking me to do anal, how I looked naked, if I had sex over the weekend, what it would be like to fuck me, what his cum would look like on my face.... I had to have the crew stay in the room [with] me while I got him ready.... And when I left I called HR.... He got fired instantly. He wrote me a huge apology for doing that in my DMs. Still have it. He did a “20/20” shoot in 2018, and I was there, and he walked out. Told the producer that he was “embarrassed [because] he was inappropriate with a staff member.” He really needs to take a seat.”
Dani told Essence Touré's involvement with the R. Kelly documentary pushed her to speak out publicly. “When I saw him going around as R. Kelly’s docuseries spokesman to different radio stations, the lies had to stop. I’ve worked with Mouse Jones before and wanted him to know the truth,” she said.
Touré interviewed R. Kelly for BET in 2008, and pressed the singer about his relationship with underaged girls. The docuseries producer Dream Hampton has addressed her decision to include him in the project, and the accusation against him. “I didn't know Toure sexually harassed someone he worked with,” she wrote. “He was included because he did the most famous interview with R. Kelly ever.”
Touré has since responded to the accusation through a statement sent to Essence. Read it below.
“On the show, our team, including myself, engaged in edgy, crass banter, that at the time I did not think was offensive for our tight-knit group. I am sorry for my language and for making her feel uncomfortable in any way. As a lead on the show, I should have refrained from this behavior. I have learned and grown from this experience.”
Touré was scheduled to interview Terry Crews on Thursday (Jan. 10), but the actor canceled his appearance following the report.
Author’s note: Touré has previously contributed to Complex.
If you or someone you know are being sexually harassed or assaulted, reach out to authorities at work or your local law enforcement. For more resources visit https://www.rainn.org/ThatsHarassment or contact the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800.656.4673.