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Vince McMahon steps down as WWE CEO and Chairman during investigation of alleged misconduct

Vince McMahon attends the WrestleMania 29 Press Conference at Radio City Music Hall on April 4, 2013 in New York City. Photo by Eugene Gologursky/WireImage

The WWE announced on Friday that CEO and chairman Vince McMahon has “voluntarily stepped back from his responsibilities as CEO and Chairman of the Board” until the board of directors concludes an investigation into claims of misconduct against him. McMahon will retain his role and responsibilities related to WWE’s creative content during the investigation.

The company is investigating allegations McMahon offered a $3 million settlement to a former female employee with whom he had an affair. In a company statement, McMahon claimed the money to the woman came from his own personal funds and not company funds. The Wall Street Journal published the allegations on Thursday. Along with the $3 million settlement, allegations were levied against John Laurinaitis, the company’s head of talent relations.

McMahon’s daughter Stephanie will serve as interim CEO and interim Chairwoman during the investigation. She issued a statement on the news.

“I love this company and am committed to working with the Independent Directors to strengthen our culture and our Company; it is extremely important to me that we have a safe and collaborative workplace. I have committed to doing everything in my power to help the Special Committee complete its work, including marshaling the cooperation of the entire company to assist in the completion of the investigation and to implement its findings.”

Her father said, “I have pledged my complete cooperation to the investigation by the Special Committee, and I will do everything possible to support the investigation. I have also pledged to accept the findings and outcome of the investigation, whatever they are.”