The New Yorker suspended staff writer Jeffrey Toobin after he reportedly exposed himself during a work Zoom call last week, sources tell Vice News. Toobin is also the chief legal analyst at CNN, where he appeared on air as recently as Saturday with host Wolf Blitzer.
“I made an embarrassingly stupid mistake, believing I was off-camera. I apologize to my wife, family, friends and co-workers,” Toobin said in a statement to Vice.
Toobin said he believed he was not visible on the video call, but employees at The New Yorker and WNYC radio on the Zoom call saw Toobin with his pants down. “I thought no one on the Zoom call could see me. I thought I had muted the Zoom video,” he said.
A CNN spokesman told Law & Crime that Toobin has “asked for some time off while he deals with a personal issue, which we have granted.” The network did not immediately respond to a request for comment on whether CNN was aware of the allegations when Toobin appeared on air Saturday.
A New Yorker spokesman said Toobin has been suspended while the incident is investigated.
This is not the first time work-related activity has gotten Toobin in trouble. In 2008, Toobin had an extramarital affair with a co-worker’s daughter that resulted in a pregnancy. Toobin reportedly offered the woman money to abort the child, in addition to offering to pay for the woman to have another child via a sperm donor. When the woman said she would not be having an abortion, Toobin reportedly told her she was going to regret it and that she should not expect any support from him.
After the child was born, Toobin was forced to go to court with the woman to address custody and financial disputes. Toobin reportedly resisted having his name on the child’s birth certificate and failed to pay the requested child support.