Mario Batali might be off the hook for alleged cases of sexual misconduct in NYC.
Sources from the New York City Police Department reportedly told TMZ that two cases of sexual assault against the disgraced celebrity chef have been closed.
A representative for the NYPD’s Public Information office declined to comment to Fox News about the investigation.
Police had been investigating the two charges against Batali after several accusations against the chef came to light in 2018. One woman had claimed Batali raped her at Babbo, his flagship NYC restaurant, in 2004, while another appeared on “60 Minutes” and alleged that Batali drugged and sexually assaulted her during a 2005 visit to the Spotted Pig eatery in Manhattan’s West Village.
The Spotted Pig and its owner Ken Friedman also came under scrutiny in 2018 after sources inside the restaurant claimed Friedman would entertain friends, including Batali, in a private third-floor dining area that some of the employees had dubbed “the rape room,” per a New York Times report published in Dec. 2017.
Batali first announced he would be stepping away from the “day-to-day operations” of his restaurant group in December 2017, following an Eater report detailing sexual misconduct accusations leveled by four women, some of whom were employed at Batali’s restaurants. Additional accusations of inappropriate behavior surfaced in the following weeks, including accounts from a former Del Posto hostess who said Batali touched her breasts, and that of a former manager at celebrity hot-spot The Spotted Pig who claimed to have seen Batali grope and kiss a woman who appeared unconscious.
Amid the accusations, ABC relieved Batali of his co-hosting duties on ABC’s “The Chew,” and a revival of his “Molto Mario” series on the Food Network was canceled.