On Sunday, the ousted Today show anchor was photographed grabbing fishing supplies from his boat in the Hamptons, where he has been living since he was fired in November 2017 due to Nevils’ sexual misconduct complaint. He was also spotted picking up coffee in the Hamptons on Oct. 16.
Sources recently told PEOPLE that Lauer, 61, was maintaining a low profile in anticipation of Ronan Farrow‘s new book, which featured an explosive interview with Nevils. (The rape accusation first surfaced in an Oct. 8 excerpt.)
“Matt has been hunkered down in the Hamptons in anticipation of this book,” said one source. “He knew bad things were in it, but he didn’t know exactly what was going to make it into the news.”
In Catch and Kill: Lies, Spies, and a Conspiracy to Protect Predators (out now), Nevils alleges that Lauer anally raped her in his hotel room at the 2014 Sochi Olympics. Nevils told Farrow she was “too drunk to consent” and also stated multiple times that she did not want to have anal intercourse.
Nevils said in the book that she had more sexual encounters with Lauer back in New York City, telling Farrow: “It was completely transactional. It was not a relationship.”
Lauer, who recently finalized his divorce from longtime wife Annette Roque, penned a lengthy letter in response, claiming the encounter was “extramarital, but consensual.” He said the encounter in Sochi was the beginning of his affair with Nevils and “the first of many sexual encounters between us over the next several months.”
Lauer, who pointed out what he claims are “contradictions” in Nevils’ story, concluded by stating that he has “never assaulted anyone or forced anyone to have sex. Period.”
Nevils slammed Lauer’s open letter, calling it a “case study in victim shaming.”
“There’s the Matt Lauer that millions of Americans watched on TV every morning for two decades, and there is the Matt Lauer who this morning attempted to bully a former colleague into silence,” she said in a statement. “I am not afraid of him now. Regardless of his threats, bullying, and the shaming and predatory tactics I knew he would (and now has) tried to use against me.”
In a statement read on-air on the Today show after Nevils’ rape accusation was first publicly reported earlier this month, NBC News said, “Matt Lauer’s conduct was appalling, horrific and reprehensible, as we said at the time. That’s why he was fired within 24 hours of us first learning of the complaint. Our hearts break again for our colleague.”
If you or someone you know has been sexually assaulted, please contact the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673) or go to online.rainn.org.