WNYW’s Greg Kelly Cleared Of Rape Allegations
NEW YORK — The police commissioner’s TV host son won’t face criminal charges of sexually assaulting a woman who said he attacked her after a date last fall, prosecutors said Tuesday.
“After reviewing all of the evidence, we have determined that the facts established during our investigation do not fit the definitions of sexual assault crimes under New York criminal law,” the chief of the Manhattan district attorney’s office sex crimes unit, Martha Bashford, wrote in a letter Tuesday to an attorney for Greg Kelly.
“No criminal charges are appropriate” against Kelly, Bashford added in the letter to his lawyer, Andrew M. Lankler.
Kelly’s accuser told police late last month that he raped her in her lower Manhattan law office after they met for drinks Oct. 8, assaulting her while she was incapable of consenting to sex, and that she became pregnant from the encounter and had an abortion, according to a person familiar with the investigation and a law enforcement official. Neither was authorized to speak publicly, and they spoke to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity.
Kelly, 43, had vehemently denied doing anything wrong, and he portrayed the prosecutors’ conclusions as vindication.
“I am thankful that the investigation established what I’ve known all along, that I am innocent of the allegations that were waged against me,” Kelly said in a statement.
He said he intended soon to return to his spot as co-host of local Fox affiliate WNYW-TV’s “Good Day New York”; he has taken time off since the allegations surfaced Jan. 25.
“I am so blessed to have a wonderful family and friends whose support for me never wavered,” added Kelly, whose father, Raymond Kelly, has been the city’s police boss for a decade after an earlier stint in the 1990s and has declined to comment on the allegations.
The woman told police she met Greg Kelly on the street; they then arranged to meet for drinks three days later at a bar at the nearby South Street Seaport, a second person familiar with the investigation has said, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss details not made public. The woman and Kelly stayed in contact afterward, the first person said.
The woman’s boyfriend learned the story and became enraged, that person said.
While the New York Police Department speedily turned the matter over to the district attorney’s office when the woman walked into a police station Jan. 24, citing the potential conflict of interest in investigating a son of the commissioner, Raymond Kelly was a side note in the story of how the allegations surfaced.
Before the woman went to police, her boyfriend confronted the commissioner in person at a public event, saying Greg Kelly had ruined his girlfriend’s life but declining to elaborate on the spot when asked what he meant, police spokesman Paul Browne said. The commissioner suggested the boyfriend send him a letter, but the man apparently never did, Browne said.
The allegation had put Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. in the position of investigating an allegation against a relative of a key law enforcement ally , and presented the first-term DA with another new high-profile sex crime investigation less than six months after an attempted-rape charge against former International Monetary Fund leader Dominique Strauss-Kahn collapsed amid doubt about his accuser’s trustworthiness. Strauss-Kahn denied the allegations against him.
In the Kelly case, prosecutors interviewed “numerous relevant fact and expert witnesses,” analyzed receipts, security logs, text messages and telephone records and interviewed Kelly and the woman, Bashford wrote. They do not plan to charge the woman with any crime, DA’s office spokeswoman Joan Vollero said.
The AP does not name people who report being sexually assaulted unless they agree to be identified or come forward publicly.
A WNYW-TV representative didn’t immediately respond to an email message Tuesday night.
Kelly, a former Marine turned TV journalist, appeared on local stations in New York and Binghamton, N.Y., before joining Fox News in 2002. He covered the Iraq War, including four assignments in Baghdad, and was the White House correspondent from 2005-07, according to his biography on WNYW’s website. In 2007, the television show “Extra” identified him as the most eligible anchorman on TV.
Kelly has appeared since 2008 on “Good Day New York.” One of his most recent guests before his leave was Vance, discussing the problem of elder abuse and fielding some questions from Kelly about the Strauss-Kahn case.
Associated Press writers Deepti Hajela, Tom Hays and Colleen Long contributed to this report.