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Sunday October 22nd, 2017 10:40PM

The Latest: Writers Guild pledges more harassment prevention

By The Associated Press
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NEW YORK (AP) — The Latest on sexual harassment allegations against Harvey Weinstein (all times local):

2:40 p.m.

The eastern branch of the Writers Guild of America says it will take steps to make it easier for women to report sexual harassment and assault.

In a statement Thursday, guild President Beau Willimon and Executive Director Lowell Peterson condemned Harvey Weinstein's "deplorable" behavior and said that "sexual harassment and assault have long been hallmarks of the entertainment industry."

The guild said it will review what it can do to facilitate prevention of harassment going forward.

The statement acknowledged that accusers often speak out at and face great professional and emotional risk.

___

2:25 p.m.

A woman who once interviewed with Harvey Weinstein for a nanny job has gone public with her story about how he interviewed her wearing only boxer shorts and an undershirt.

Actor, comedian and writer Sarah Ann Masse said her nanny agency referred her to Weinstein in 2008 for a part-time position to care for his three children from his first marriage. She said that when she rang the bell of Weinstein's Westport, Connecticut, home she was shocked to see him in nothing but the undergarments when he answered the door.

Masse said she remained calm as he led her to a couch and sat down on a couch across from her and went ahead with standard interview questions.

At one point, Masse said, two of the children wandered into the room and "he screamed at them to leave." He then asked whether she felt it was a conflict to be his nanny while pursuing an acting career and smirked when he asked whether she would "flirt" with his friends to get ahead.

When the interview was finished, Masse said, Weinstein hugged her tight and said, "I love you." About a week later she was told by a Weinstein assistant she didn't get the job because she was an actor.

Masse first told her story Wednesday to Variety, saying she was in part inspired by the bravery of other women who had come forward.

___

12:40 p.m.

British media say London police are investigating a sexual assault allegation against Harvey Weinstein.

London's Metropolitan Police force says it has received an allegation of sexual assault from the Merseyside force in northwest England. It says the claim will be assessed by detectives from the sexual offenses team.

Merseyside Police says the allegation was made Wednesday and concerns "an alleged sexual assault in the London area in the 1980s."

British police do not identify suspects who have not been charged. British media including Sky News, The Guardian and the BBC identified the alleged assaulter as Weinstein.

New York City police said Thursday that detectives are taking a fresh look at sexual assault allegations against Weinstein.

___

12:30 p.m.

Actress Kate Beckinsale says she was 17 years old when Harvey Weinstein greeted her in his bathrobe for a meeting in a room at the Savoy Hotel. In an Instagram post Thursday, Beckinsale says she left the meeting uneasy but unscathed.

Beckinsale recalls that a few years later Weinstein asked her if he had tried anything with her at the first meeting. She says she realized "he couldn't remember if he had assaulted me or not."

The actress says she said no to Weinstein professionally many times over the years, and that Weinstein would often respond with anger, profanity and threats.

Beckinsale calls for a new paradigm in the industry and says "let's stop allowing our young women to be sexual cannon fodder."

___

12:15 p.m.

Twitter says that Rose McGowan's account was suspended because of a tweet that included a phone number and has announced that the actress's account is now unlocked.

In a statement, Twitter said Thursday it was a tweet by McGowan with a personal phone number that violated its service terms. The company said it will "be clearer about these policies and decisions in the future."

McGowan's suspension caused an enormous backlash on social media, with many criticizing Twitter for a move that would silence an alleged victim of sexual harassment by Harvey Weinstein on its service.

McGowan has been among the most vocal in Hollywood about sexual abuse in the industry.

___

11:50 a.m.

Hachette Book Group, one of the country's top publishers, says that it has "terminated" its deal with Weinstein Books.

Hachette and the book publishing arm of the Weinstein Company had a co-publishing arrangement that included works by Dick Van Dyke, Larry King and Tim Russert.

According to Hachette, titles under the Weinstein imprint will be published through the Hachette Books imprint. The staff of Weinstein, which had released around 10 books a years, will be folded into Hachette Books.

___

10:55 a.m.

New York City police detectives are taking a fresh look into sexual assault allegations against Harvey Weinstein.

Police spokesman Peter Donald said Thursday that investigators are reviewing police files to see if any women previously reported being assaulted or harassed by the media mogul.

So far, no past complaints have been found, other than one well-known case that prompted an investigation in 2015.

The department is also encouraging anyone with information to come forward.

A law enforcement official says detectives also plan to contact women who spoke about their encounters with Weinstein in a New Yorker article this week.

The official wasn't authorized to speak publicly on an ongoing probe and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity.

Weinstein has denied any nonconsensual sexual conduct with any women.

___

9:49 a.m.

Rose McGowan's Twitter account has been suspended, temporarily muting a central figure in the allegations against Harvey Weinstein.

McGowan says that Twitter had suspended her from tweeting after the social media company said she broke its rules. On her Instagram account, McGowan says "there are powerful forces at work" and pleads for others to "be my voice."

Representatives for Twitter declined to comment Thursday.

The New York Times earlier reported that McGowan was among the numerous women sexually harassed by Weinstein, who paid McGowan a financial settlement in 1997. McGowan on Tuesday tweeted "now I am allowed to say rapist."

McGowan also recently called Ben Affleck "a liar" on Twitter and suggested the actor knew about Weinstein's conduct. Representatives for Affleck haven't responded to messages regarding that allegation.

___

9:43 a.m.

Film mogul Harvey Weinstein says he's "not doing OK" in a video posted on TMZ, but he is hoping for a "second chance" amid the fallout surrounding allegations of widespread sexual abuse.

Weinstein spoke in front of media Wednesday as he emerged from a Los Angeles home and got into a vehicle.

In remarks captured on video, he says he needs to "get help" and "we all make mistakes."

He concludes with an obscenity-laced remark.

___

5:11 a.m.

Cannes film festival officials say they have been "dismayed" to learn about the accusations of sexual violence against Hollywood film producer Harvey Weinstein.

Pierre Lescure, the festival president, and general delegate Thierry Fremaux, wrote in a joint statement: "These actions point to a pattern of behavior that merits only the clearest and most unequivocal condemnation."

Weinstein attended the world-famous festival many times and several movies he produced have been selected in the competition.

"Our thoughts go out to the victims, to those who have had the courage to testify and to all the others," Fremaux and Lescure said. "May this case help us once again to denounce all such serious and unacceptable practices."

___

3:46 a.m.

The Harvey Weinstein sex abuse scandal has entangled a former president, a former presidential candidate and now a former presidential adviser.

Steve Bannon, the former Trump White House chief strategist and current head of Breitbart News, is the latest politico touched by the scandal.

Bannon, whose website has hammered Democrats for accepting Weinstein's political donations, himself profited from a relationship with the movie mogul, in an ill-fated joint venture more than a decade ago. Bannon served as chairman of a small company that distributed DVDs and home videos, and went into business in 2005 with The Weinstein Co., led by Harvey Weinstein and his brother Bob.

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