It hasn’t been an easy couple of years for Annette Roque, to say the least. After new assault allegations about her ex-husband, Matt Lauer, were revealed on Wednesday, October 9, a source told Us Weekly what Roque’s 20-year relationship was really like with the former TV host. “She’s been through hell,” they explained. “Annette wanted out of the marriage for a long time. She stayed for Matt’s career — and, more important, for their kids.”
Additionally, the 61-year-old never seemed to be faithful to his wife, whom he shares three kids with: Jack, 18, Romy, 16, and Thijs, 12. “There were cracks in the marriage from very early on,” the insider explained. “Matt has always been a ladies’ man, and there were affairs in the beginning.”
Not only was it hard for the 52-year-old Netherlands native to be married to Lauer, but their living arrangements weren’t the best, either. “Matt’s a total control freak,” another source said. “Nothing was ever out of place, and he expected this same quality in his wife too.” Despite promising to change his playboy ways, Roque “chose to believe Matt’s denials,” the insider added. The former flames ended up finalizing their divorce in September.
Brooke Nevils — a former NBC employee — detailed the alleged incident between her and Lauer in Ronan Farrow’s tell-all book, Catch and Kill. “It was nonconsensual in the sense that I was too drunk to consent,” she claimed about their interaction while they were on assignment at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. “It was nonconsensual in that I said, multiple times, that I didn’t want to have anal sex.”
Nevils ended up confiding in her coworker Meredith Vieira, who encouraged her to talk to human resources with a lawyer, which she did. In November 2017, Hoda Kotb and Savannah Guthrie announced Lauer had been fired about an unnamed “colleague” — a.k.a. Nevils — made a “detailed complaint … about inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace.”
However, Lauer denied that he raped Nevils. “In a new book, it is alleged that an extramarital, but consensual, sexual encounter I have previously admitted having, was in fact an assault,” he said in a statement through his lawyer, Variety reported. “It is categorically false, ignores the facts and defies common sense.”
He added, “I had an extramarital affair with Brooke Nevils in 2014. It began when she came to my hotel room very late one night in Sochi, Russia. We engaged in a variety of sexual acts. We performed oral sex on each other, we had vaginal sex and we had anal sex. Each act was mutual and completely consensual. The story Brooke tells is filled with false details intended only to create the impression this was an abusive encounter. Nothing could be further from the truth.”
Roque decided to speak out for the first time after Lauer told his side of the story. “In response to your inquiry, our client has asked us to tell you now that the parties are officially divorced, her priority and only concern is for their wonderful children,” Roque’s lawyer John M. Teitler told People. “Our client will make no further statements.”
For now, Roque is trying to move on with her life. “Annette was finally feeling better about going out in public, holding her head up high,” a source exclusively told In Touch. “But the gross allegations in this new book, which isn’t even out yet, came crashing down on her like a meteor. She doesn’t want to go through this again. It’s too much to handle.”
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