“Bravo has comprehensive policies and guidelines relating to the safety of cast and crew which production companies are required to follow, in addition to their own protocols they have in place,” the network said in a statement to Us Weekly on Friday, September 28. “We take all allegations seriously and then proceed accordingly with our producing partners. Bravo and Truly Original, the production company for The Real Housewives of Potomac, have suspended filming with Michael Darby.”
Truly Original said in a separate statement to Us its “No. 1 priority is the safety of our employees, contractors, vendors and others that work with us.”
“We take all allegations of sexual and other misconduct seriously, and have stringent policies, as well as training, in place to deal with all employee issues,” the company said. “Immediately upon learning of these allegations, we commenced a thorough internal review and, per our protocol, took all appropriate steps to ensure the safe working environment and safe forum for communication for everyone associated with the production. The review is ongoing and we are not able to comment further.”
TMZ reported a day earlier that Michael, 59, allegedly groped and grabbed a cameraman’s butt while filming the Bravo reality series on September 1. The alleged victim, Orville Palmer, reportedly claimed that Michael gave him a “flirtatious look” after the incident. According to the website, Michael was later charged with felony assault and misdemeanor improper sexual conduct.
RHOP star Gizelle Bryant previously accused the contractor of touching another man’s butt in an episode of the show’s first season in 2016. In response to that claim, Ashley, 30, defended her husband: “My man has sex with me, he loves me and he gives it to me good. So quite frankly, whatever he does in joking manners is not a reflection of my man’s sexuality.”
Michael did not immediately respond to Us Weekly’s request for comment.