Tom Frieden, the former head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and an ex-New York City Health Commissioner, has been arrested amid allegations he sexually harassed a woman in his Brooklyn apartment.
The victim is reportedly a 55-year-old woman who is accusing Frienden of grabbing her behind without her consent.
Frieden is scheduled to appear in Brooklyn Criminal Court on Friday afternoon to face one count of forcible touching, one count of sex abuse in the third degree and one count of harassment in the second degree.
The two have known each other for several years, the official said.
Across his career, Frieden has been praised for his work on reducing smoking rates and bringing the Ebola epidemic to its end.
The president and CEO of Vital Strategies, which oversees Freiden's current employer "Resolve to Save Lives", released a statement, saying Frieden "has the highest ethical standards both personally and professionally". His attorney, Laura Brevetti, entered a not guilty plea on his behalf.
The president of Vital Strategies, Jose L. Castro, came out in support of Frieden. Prior to that, he served as New York City Health Commissioner. "In all of my experiences with him, there have never been any concerns or reports of inappropriate conduct", he said. "This assessment determined there have been no incidents of workplace harassment", he said.
In the '90s, he led a program to control tuberculosis in a NY, lowering incidences whereby people were resistant to multiple drugs.
Nonetheless, earlier this month Vital Strategies hired an investigator to interview Resolve to Save Lives employees even though the woman didn't work there.