CBSN

L.A. prosecutors declined to pursue sex abuse charges against Les Moonves, citing statute of limitations

Last Updated Jul 31, 2018 8:45 PM EDT

NEW YORK — The Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office declined to pursue charges in February against CBS Corporation CEO Les Moonves after a woman told investigators she had been assaulted on multiple occasions in the 1980s. According to an internal evaluation of the woman's claims, prosecutors determined the statute of limitations had expired on three potential charges.

The "charge evaluation worksheet" provided by the DA's office is dated Feb. 23, 2018, and names Leslie Roy Moonves as a suspect. The victim is listed as Jane Doe.

Several lines in a comments section on the worksheet are blacked out, but some of the claims are described. "Victim encountered suspect through employment in the television industry," the section reads. "Victim has reported multiple incidents of assault by suspect. Victim disclosed the second two incidents to a friend approximately a year before making report to law enforcement. The applicable statutes of limitation have expired as to all three incidents."

One of the potential charges relates to an alleged incident on July 1, 1986. The other two charges list Jan. 1, 1988, as the date of the alleged offenses. Possible offenses listed were forced oral copulation, indecent exposure and battery.  

Sources with the LAPD told CBS News that police interviewed Moonves' attorney, but not Moonves himself. 

Moonves, 68, joined the former CBS Corporation in 1995 as President of CBS Entertainment. He has been president and CEO of CBS Corporation since 2006. In the late 1980s, he was an executive at Lorimar Television. 

A story in The New Yorker last week detailed allegations by six women who accused Moonves of sexual misconduct or abuse spanning from the 1980s to the early 2000s. The longtime TV executive remains chairman and CEO of CBS while an investigation is ongoing, the board of directors said Monday.

Ronan Farrow, the author of the New Yorker story, said in a tweet Tuesday that the potential charges "appear to stem from allegations not included in our story, from a different, additional woman."

Moonves has denied claims of sexual assault. In a statement to The New Yorker, Moonves said: "I recognize that there were times decades ago when I may have made some women uncomfortable by making advances. Those were mistakes, and I regret them immensely. But I always understood and respected — and abided by the principle — that 'no' means 'no,' and I have never misused my position to harm or hinder anyone's career."

Read the prosecutors' evaluation here: