Sexual Assault News From Cooking to Marching: Mario Batali Restaurants and West Point Cadets

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Two recent news stories centered on sexual assault jumped out at us this week. The stories are connected in that they both concern sexual assaults on women, in one case by a world-famous celebrity chef and in the second case by one of the U.S.’s most revered military education institutions.

Mario Batali Gives Up Restaurants Ownership Due to Sexual Assault Charges

More than a year after being accused of sexual misconduct, Mario Batali – chef, writer, restauranteur and media personality – has given up his ownership shares in his restaurants throughout the U.S. and in Singapore.

Although Batali ceased day-to-day responsibilities in the restaurants after the 2017 accusations, his partnership with the Bastianich family is now formally dissolved and the partners have bought Batali’s shares in the businesses. According to a Bastianich family member, Batali will not profit from the restaurants in any way going forward.

Several women have accused Batali of sexual assault or sexual harassment. One allegation is that he drugged and sexually assaulted an employee in 2005.

Following the 2017 allegations, he was fired from the television show The Chew. Some retailers have pulled his cookbooks and other products from the shelves.

Recently, three investigations into sexual assault allegations against Batali were closed by New York City police because of lack of evidence.

West Point Dedicates a Day to Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment Issues

The U.S. Army took action and suspended classes for a day so cadets at the U.S. Military Academy in West Point could address the persistent problems of sexual assault and sexual harassment.

The full-day “stand down” came in response to a recent Defense Department report showing that the number of unwanted cadet sexual encounters at U.S. service academies rose sharply in the last two years – a 47% increase. The huge increase indicates that the military needs to do a better job to create a safer atmosphere at these campuses.

The Department of Defense stated that this increase stems from a failure to solve the root culture causes. One cited example is the prevalence of drinking alcohol off-campus at all of the service academies.

The West Point report showed the greatest estimated increase in unwanted sexual contact. 16.5% of female survey respondents reported this behavior, a 62% increase over the prior 2016 report.

West Point Superintendent Lt. Gen Williams stated that sexual assault and harassment “… is contrary to West Point ideals and Army values.” Williams addressed the cadets, faculty and staff who then participated in facilitated discussions about West Point culture and possible solutions.

We Can Help If You Have Been a Victim of Sexual Assault

If you or a family member has experienced bullyingsexual assaultsexual harassment of any kind, or has been injured in an accident or by any other type of personal injury, or needs help with any employment discrimination or family law issue, please contact the Law Offices of Paul S. Foreman, P.C. immediately. We have the right experience to get the optimal results for your case. Please call us for a free consultationAttorney Paul S. Foreman, personal injury attorney in Roseland, will fight to secure justice for you and your family. You can reach us at 973-315-3232 or contact us via the website.