In October 2019, according to the lawsuit, Fox News counsel sent McHenry’s lawyers text messages ostensibly between McHenry and Murdoch that it had obtained during the outside investigation. “The two-page screenshot contains two photos claiming to be from Ms. McHenry to Mr. Murdoch with her cleavage and near bare breast shown,” the suit reads. “These photos and text messages are fraudulent, doctored, and not of Ms. McHenry.” According to the suit, McHenry offered for her phone to be forensically examined, provided Murdoch did the same. To date, the suit alleges, Murdoch “has refused to submit to a forensic examination of his phone.” The suit claims Murdoch showed the doctored texts to others at Fox, “irreparably harming” McHenry’s reputation.
Murdoch’s behavior, McHenry told me in a phone conversation with her attorney, had “been building for a while. It really had turned a job I loved into a dreaded experience.” When she spoke to Rauchet, she said she was not told to contact human resources. “I have tried repeatedly, and so has Lisa, to sort this out, to comply with Fox,” McHenry said. “I endured not one, but two investigations when it was glaringly obvious [that] the first one was woefully inadequate. I think any woman can relate to feeling violated and upset that images of other women’s near-nude bodies are being represented as their own.” And yet “[Fox is] going to publicly announce that their investigation was thorough, and that they handled everything properly.” (In a statement, a Fox News spokesperson said, “Ms. McHenry’s lawsuit recycles the same allegations she filed with the New York State Division of Human Rights in October, to which we filed a response on Friday. As we have previously stated, Ms. McHenry’s allegations have been fully investigated and we are confident our actions will be deemed entirely appropriate in litigation. We expect all of her claims to be dismissed.”)