NBC “Nightly News” anchor and Managing Editor Brian Williams announced Saturday (February 7) that he’s temporarily stepping down from the broadcast.
The move follows a rough week for Williams, who came under fire after admitting he embellished a story about a helicopter mission that took place in 2003 in Iraq. On Wednesday he apologized to viewers on the air, saying he was not actually aboard a helicopter that had been shot down, as he had previously claimed.
In an internal note to NBC staffers, Williams, 55, wrote:
"In the midst of a career spent covering and consuming news, it has become painfully apparent to me that I am presently too much a part of the news, due to my actions. As Managing Editor of NBC Nightly News, I have decided to take myself off of my daily broadcast for the next several days, and Lester Holt has kindly agreed to sit in for me to allow us to adequately deal with this issue. Upon my return, I will continue my career-long effort to be worthy of the trust of those who place their trust in us."
On Friday NBC News President Deborah Turness announced the network will investigate Williams’ reporting in Iraq as well as his work during Hurricane Katrina in 2005.