Chris Cuomo's former executive producer felt 'threatened' before quitting, ...

Chris Cuomo's former executive producer felt 'threatened' before quitting, ...
Chris Cuomo's former executive producer felt 'threatened' before quitting, ...

A former executive producer on Chris Cuomo's CNN show begged to leave after clashing with the host and feeling threatened, sources say.

Melanie Buck worked on Cuomo Prime Time from April 2018 to March 2020 when she asked to be taken off the show and moved to another department, Page Six reported, citing 'a CNN insider'. 

More than one source allegedly told the outlet that Buck had 'felt threatened'. 

Buck confirmed in a statement via CNN that she had asked to leave the show. 

'I spent two years as EP on Chris' show and I'm proud to have led it to #1 at CNN,' the producer said in the statement to Page Six.

'We ultimately had significant differences, and I asked to leave the show. I have moved on and am looking forward to my latest role with CNN+.'

Melanie Buck (pictured) worked on Cuomo Prime Time from April 2018 to March 2020 when she asked to be taken off the show

Buck confirmed in a statement via CNN that she had asked to leave the show and had 'significant differences' with Cuomo (pictured)

A former executive producer on Chris Cuomo(right)'s CNN show begged to leave after clashing with the host and feeling threatened, sources say. Melanie Buck (left) worked on Cuomo Prime Time from April 2018 to March 2020 when she asked to be taken off the show and moved to another department, Page Six reported, citing 'a CNN insider'

After leaving Cuomo's show, Buck executive produced the channel's 2020 election coverage, live events and taped special programming. 

She is now working on live morning coverage for CNN+ -  a subscription streaming service set to launch next year. 

Reports of Buck's clashes with Cuomo come as the anchor is  facing heat over allegations of inappropriate physical contact.

Shelley Ross, another former executive producer of Cuomo's show, accused the CNN anchor of groping her back in 2005.

Ross wrote in an op-ed for the New York Times last week stating that Cuomo squeezed her buttock without her permission. 

After a response from Cuomo, Ross said he's 'no more enlightened today than he was then'.

 Cuomo - who has barely been seen in public since the allegation surfaced last week - appeared to dismiss the claim, and noted that he had apologized to her back then.

'As Shelley acknowledges, our interaction was not sexual in nature. It happened 16 years ago in a public setting when she was a top executive at ABC,' he said. 'I apologized to her then, and I meant it.'   

But Ross slammed Cuomo's statement, saying it proves that the CNN anchor has not changed in the 16 years since the incident at a going-away party for an ABC colleague.

'I was hoping that in 15, 16 years that he had changed,' she told Insider, 'but he's no more enlightened today than he was then, as demonstrated by his response.'

On Sunday, Cuomo was seen driving his vintage Pontiac Firebird in the Hamptons

On Sunday, Cuomo was seen driving his vintage Pontiac Firebird in the Hamptons

He gave photographers a thumbs-up amidst the groping allegations

He gave photographers a thumbs-up amidst the groping allegations

Cuomo dressed casually in a t-shirt, shorts, a baseball cap and sunglasses on Sunday in the Hamptons

Cuomo dressed casually in a t-shirt, shorts, a baseball cap and sunglasses on Sunday in the Hamptons 

Shelley Ross accused CNN anchor Chris Cuomo of groping her at a party in 2005

Chris Cuomo sent an emailed apology at the time

Shelley Ross, left, a former executive producer of Cuomo's Primetime Live show, accused CNN anchor Chris Cuomo, right, of groping her at a party in 2005. He has not denied these allegations, and noted that he apologized to her after the incident

'I don't acknowledge that there's anything that was 'our interaction,'' she said. 'I was not a participant. I was groped. 'And so to say that I acknowledge the interaction, no. That shows a lack of enlightenment.' 

Ross had previously written that she did not want Cuomo to be fired from CNN, where he has served as an anchor since 2013, but instead urged him to 'journalistically repent' for his behavior.

Cuomo broke cover on Sunday dressed casually in shorts, a t-shirt and a baseball cap with sunglasses to drive his vintage Pontiac Firebird in the Hamptons. 

The anchor seems to be holed up in the Hamptons and was last spotted dashing the Hamptons airport headed for New York City to host Cuomo Prime Time on CNN.  He did not address the allegation during his show on Friday night.

He gave photographers a thumbs-up on Sunday.

At the time of the alleged incident, Ross had recently moved jobs from executive producer at ABC's 'Primetime Live' - where Cuomo was an anchor - to becoming the executive producer of an ABC entertainment special.

Ross said Cuomo explained his actions away on the night as being okay because she was 'no longer my boss.' 

'I was at the party with my husband, who sat behind me on an ottoman sipping his Diet Coke as I spoke with work friends,' she wrote in the op ed. 

Cuomo, seen here on his show Cuomo Prime Time, reportedly sent Ross an emailed apology after the alleged incident in 2005

Cuomo, seen here on his show Cuomo Prime Time, reportedly sent Ross an emailed apology after the alleged incident in 2005

'When Mr. Cuomo entered the Upper West Side bar, he walked toward me and greeted me with a strong bear hug while lowering one hand to firmly grab and squeeze the cheek of my buttock.'

Cuomo told her 'I can do this now that you're no longer my boss,' she claimed, adding that it was said 'with a kind of cocky arrogance'. 

CHRIS CUOMO'S EMAIL APOLOGY

Subject line: 'Now that I think of it… I am ashamed.' 

Email: 'though my hearty greeting was a function of being glad to see you...

'Christian Slater got arrested for a (kind of) similar act (though borne of an alleged negative intent, unlike my own)...and as a husband i can empathize with not liking to see my wife patted as such...

'so pass along my apology to your very good and noble husband...and i apologize to you as well, for even putting you in such a position...

'next time, i will remember the lesson, no matter how happy i am to see you...' 

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Ross said she pushed Cuomo away from her, with her husband witnessing what had happened. 

''No you can't,' I said, pushing him off me at the chest while stepping back, revealing my husband, who had seen the entire episode at close range. We quickly left,' she wrote.   

Ross said she received an email from Cuomo one hour later telling her that he was 'ashamed' of his behavior.

The email, dated June 1 2005, first apologized to Ross's 'very good and noble husband' for having to witness his wife 'patted as such' - before going on to apologize to her.  

'Now that I think of it… I am ashamed,' read the subject line of the email. 

'though my hearty greeting was a function of being glad to see you...,' the email began. 

Cuomo then went on to compare his actions to that of Hollywood actor Christian Slater, who one month earlier had been arrested for allegedly randomly grabbing a woman's buttocks while she was walking through a street in Manhattan, New York City.

Slater was charged with third degree sexual abuse but the charges were later dropped.  

'Christian Slater got arrested for a (kind of) similar act (though borne of an alleged negative intent, unlike my own)...and as a husband i can empathize with not liking to see my wife patted as such...,' the email read. 

'so pass along my apology to your very good and noble husband...and i apologize to you as well, for even putting you in such a position...

He closed out the email with: 'next time, i will remember the lesson, no matter how happy i am to see you...' 

Ross told Insider on Friday that his statement to the Times following her op-ed

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