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More Reports Question Accuracy Of Reporting By NBC's Brian Williams

Brian Williams
Brian Williams Photo Credit: Screen grab from YouTube

WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. -- More reports by "NBC Nightly News" anchor Brian Williams were questioned Tuesday by people in New Jersey and New Orleans.

A restaurant owner in New Jersey told USA Today that he does not believe Williams' claim that he was robbed at gunpoint in Red Bank, N.J., while selling Christmas trees from a truck in the 1970s.

The Washington Post also reported Tuesday a hotel manager disputed Williams' claims that he saw a dead body float past the hotel during Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

In an interview with Fairfield University in 2007, Williams also claimed to have survived an enemy attack. The interview is posted online.

Williams lives in New Canaan and has been the anchor of the "NBC Nightly News" since 2004. 

Myra DeGersdorrf, who was the general manager at the Ritz-Carlton in the French Quarter of New Orleans at the time, also said Williams' statements that gangs had overrun the hotel and that medicine was lacking for guests were untrue.

DeGersdorrf, who now lives in Arizona, said there was more than enough medicine and doctors. DeGersdorff said perhaps "one or two" gang members breached the door. Williams said in a 2007 book by Douglas Brinkley, "The Great Deluge,'' that “armed gangs had broken into the 527-room hotel, brandishing guns and terrorizing guests and that he saw a "corpse floating down Canal Street from his eighth-floor window earlier that day. Then fever consumed him.”

In a 2008 interview with New Jersey Monthly magazine, Williams said he was held up at gunpoint as a teenager while selling Christmas trees to help a church .

The New Jersey restaurant owner, said Red Bank was a safe city when Williams sold his Christmas tees. "To be robbed in front of a church? Red Bank just wasn't like that," said Daniel Murphy Jr., who  has lived in the borough since his family moved there in 1949. "It was the kind of town where as a kid I'd leave the house in the morning and not come back until 8, 9 o'clock at night and you never worried about safety."

Williams, who is the anchor and managing editor of "NBC Nightly News," said Saturday that he will take a break from anchoring the broadcast for "the next several days." He made the announcement after he made a statement on the news last week clarifying that he "incorrectly remembered details in a 2003 reporting mission to Iraq," according to NBC News. He had previously said that the helicopter he was on had been hit by a rocket-propelled grenade.

NBC News president Deborah Turness announced Friday that there will be an internal review of the reporting that followed the events in Iraq.


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