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MPR says allegations against Garrison Keillor go far beyond single touch

MPR says allegations against Garrison Keillor go far beyond single touch
From CBC - January 23, 2018

Minnesota Public Radio provided additional details of allegations of sexual harassment against humorist Garrison Keillor on Tuesday, saying his alleged conduct went well beyond his account in November of accidentally touching a woman's bare back.

MPR said in a statement that Keillor was accused by a woman who worked on his A Prairie Home Companionradio show of dozens of sexually inappropriate incidents over several years, including requests for sexual contact and explicit sexual communications and touching.

MPR said the woman, whom it has not identified, detailed the allegations in a 12-page letter that included excerpts of emails and written messages. MPR said as it attempted to investigate the case, Keillor and his attorney refused to grant access to his computer, emails and text messages.

Keillor did not respond to an emailed request for comment from The Associated Press. He told the Star Tribune listeners were angry over his firing because they "smelled a rat" and "they know I am not abusive." He called the woman's account "a highly selective and imaginative piece of work" drawn up by her attorney.

'I meant to pat her back'

MPR faced a backlash from outraged Keillor fans after firing the best-selling humorist after four decades of his telling folksy stories about his fictional Minnesota hometown of Lake Wobegon. Keillor accused the station of firing him without a full investigation. Until MPR's new statement Tuesday, the only account of his actions was his.

He told the Minneapolis Star Tribune on Nov. 29 that he had simply been trying to console a co-worker.

"I meant to pat her back after she told me about her unhappiness, and her shirt was open and my hand went up it about six inches. She recoiled. I apologized," Keillor told the newspaper in an email. "I sent her an email of apology later, and she replied that she had forgiven me and not to think about it."

In a note to members Tuesday afternoon, MPR President Jon McTaggart said otherwise.

Denied access to computer

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