The Big Lead reported a bizarre story today, which includes a sexual harassment claim against ESPN involving sportscaster Chris Berman, a contracted makeup artist carrying on an affair with Cris Carter, and two private detectives who claim they were hired by ESPN.

The makeup artist, Sue Baumann, worked for a makeup company that ESPN contracts with. She spent six to seven years working with ESPN, the last several on NFL Countdown. After she was fired by her employer this summer, Baumann hired noted attorney Gloria Allred and launched a sexual harassment claim against ESPN. The Big Lead reports the claim consisted of “comments [Berman] allegedly made in the makeup room and text messages going back a few year.”

ESPN settled the sexual harassment claim, but spokesperson Josh Krulewitz told The Big Lead that was solely a business decision, and that it had no merit.

“Our thorough investigation revealed the harassment claims had no merit. We settled it solely to save a considerable amount of time and litigation costs.”

Krulewitz declined to expand upon his statement to me.

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Baumann’s involvement in ESPN controversies doesn’t end there. According to The Big Lead, in 2013 the married Baumann began a relationship with the married Carter. In early 2013 two men showed up on Baumman’s doorstep and said they worked for an ESPN employee, according to a police report filed by her husband David.

The private investigators told police they were indeed hired by ESPN, and needed to talk to David Baumann because he was “calling and harassing an employee at ESPN.” The Big Lead reports that employee was Carter, though ESPN’s associate director of security told police he “would of [sic] never sent two private investigators to Bauman’s [sic] residence.”

[The Big Lead]

Photo via AP

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Correction: The story, and the headline, originally reported that the sexual harassment claim was made against Berman. While it obviously involved Berman and his conduct, the claim itself was made against ESPN.


E-mail: kevin.draper@deadspin.com | PGP key + fingerprint | DM: @kevinmdraper