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05 May 2020, 10:05 am

NY AG reportedly probing NBC News over sexual assault claims

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NBC News is being probed over numerous claims of sexual assault and discrimination, just a day after longtime chairman Andy Lack was ousted, according to a report on Tuesday.

The New York Attorney General has been investigating the damning claims about the network for at least six months, DailyMail.com said.

More than a dozen women have been interviewed by officials from a department dubbed “The Weinstein Unit” for its work nailing movie mogul Harvey Weinstein for rape, sources told the site.

Former NBC News anchor Linda Vester confirmed to the site that she is one of the women interviewed about alleged violations at the network.

“They wanted to know as many details as I could offer about what Andy Lack’s involvement was in orchestrating a public response against me and a defense or cover-up. He was one of many,” she told the outlet.


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“My autism is not a superpower. It also isn’t some kind of god-forsaken, endless fountain of suffering inflicted on my family. It’s just part of who I am as a person”. - Sara Luterman


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10 Jun 2020, 5:36 pm

Bloomberg sued for allegedly ‘aiding’ Charlie Rose sexual harassment

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Two women already suing Charlie Rose for sexual harassment have filed a new lawsuit claiming media giant Bloomberg bears some responsibility for the disgraced TV host’s bad behavior.

“Bloomberg allowed Charlie Rose to repeatedly and unlawfully sexually harass, at Bloomberg Studios and elsewhere, female employees,” the lawsuit filed by plaintiffs Katherine Brooks Harris and Sydney McNeal alleges.

Harris and McNeal state claims of discrimination and aiding and abetting liability in the complaint filed Tuesday in Manhattan Supreme Court.

The women previously sued Rose and his former employer CBS in 2018 after Rose’s career imploded with the publication of a 2017 Washington Post article titled, “Eight women say Charlie Rose sexually harassed them — with nudity, groping and lewd calls.”

In a statement to the Daily News on Wednesday, a Bloomberg spokesman defended the company’s handling of the matter.

At all relevant times, the plaintiffs were not employees of Bloomberg L.P., because Charlie Rose Inc. operated independently of us," Bloomberg spokesman Ty Trippet said.

“Regardless, we take any complaints seriously, investigate thoroughly, and take appropriate action, where necessary, and we have no record of a complaint about Mr. Rose from either plaintiff or other individuals,” he said.

“As soon as we were aware of allegations that were reported in the media in 2017, we immediately suspended re-airing the show on our our network,” Trippet said.

In their new complaint against Bloomberg, they say the media giant is culpable because Rose worked out of a studio in Bloomberg’s headquarters on Lexington Ave. in Manhattan and used Bloomberg’s back-end services.

Harris says she began working as an associate producer on the “Charlie Rose” show in April 2017 in the Bloomberg Tower, while McNeal says she worked as an executive assistant for Rose in the same building starting in the spring 2017.

Both women say Bloomberg handled their paychecks and listed them as Bloomberg employees on IRS paperwork.

The lawsuit names only Bloomberg L.P. as a defendant, but the paperwork mentions former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the company’s founder, repeatedly.

It lists “discriminatory statements” allegedly made by the former Democratic presidential candidate over the years and says, “Mr. Bloomberg set the ‘tone at the top’ at Bloomberg.”

Harris and McNeal both allege Rose regularly pulled them close, planted “wet” kisses on their cheeks and required them to enter his private office in the Bloomberg tower to physically "awaken him from naps.”

The new lawsuit claims Bloomberg’s failure to stop such harassment amounts to “negligence or recklessness or involves a conscious disregard of the rights of others.”


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“My autism is not a superpower. It also isn’t some kind of god-forsaken, endless fountain of suffering inflicted on my family. It’s just part of who I am as a person”. - Sara Luterman


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17 Jun 2020, 8:11 pm

That '70s Show' actor Danny Masterson charged with three counts of rape in Los Angeles

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"That '70s Show" actor Danny Masterson was charged with rape in three separate cases alleged to have occurred nearly two decades ago, Los Angeles officials announced Wednesday.

A warrant was filed against Masterson, 44, on Tuesday for three counts of rape by force in connection with allegations of assault of three different women from 2001 to 2003, according to a release from the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office.

Masterson is accused of raping a 23-year-old woman from January to December 2001 and a 28-year-old woman in April 2003 in his home. A different 23-year-old woman alleges that Masterson raped her after he invited her to his home in the Hollywood Hills neighborhood sometime from October to December 2003, the prosecutor's office said.

The women are considered victims of sexual assault and were not named in the district attorney's release.

Prosecutors declined to charge Masterson in connection with two other sexual assault allegations, according to the district attorney's office, because of insufficient evidence in one and because the statute of limitations had expired in the other.

Inmate records show that Masterson was booked into the Los Angeles County Jail on Wednesday and released on bond at about 2:45 p.m. local time. Bail was set at $3.3 million.

He faces a possible maximum sentence of 45 years to life in state prison if he is convicted on all three charges.

Masterson's attorney, Tom Mesereau, insisted in a statement to NBC News that the actor was innocent and that he would be exonerated when "all the evidence comes to light."

"Obviously, Mr. Masterson and his wife are in complete shock considering that these nearly 20-year-old allegations are suddenly resulting in charges being filed, but they and their family are comforted knowing that ultimately the truth will come out," Mesereau said. "The people who know Mr. Masterson know his character and know the allegations to be false."

Masterson left the Netflix series "The Ranch" in 2017 after four women accused him of rape, accusations that Masterson denied at the time. Masterson, 44, starred in "The Ranch" with Ashton Kutcher and was an executive producer for the show.

It is unclear whether those allegations are related to the charges announced Wednesday.

"I am obviously very disappointed in Netflix's decision to write my character off of 'The Ranch.' From day one, I have denied the outrageous allegations against me," Masterson said in a statement to NBC News in 2017. "Law enforcement investigated these claims more than 15 years ago and determined them to be without merit."

The accusations against Masterson became public amid the beginning stages of the #MeToo movement, when victims were encouraged to speak out against sexual harassment and misconduct perpetuated by powerful figures


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“My autism is not a superpower. It also isn’t some kind of god-forsaken, endless fountain of suffering inflicted on my family. It’s just part of who I am as a person”. - Sara Luterman


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14 Aug 2020, 6:15 pm

Drake Bell Denies Abuse Allegations From Ex-Girlfriend Melissa Lingafelt

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Actor Drake Bell has denied allegations of abuse that arose in a video posted to TikTok from his ex-girlfriend, Melissa Lingafelt.

In the video, Lingafelt, who uses the stage name Jimi Ono on her TikTok account, alleged Wednesday that Bell verbally and physically abused her when they dated and lived together more than a decade ago.

A representative for Bell gave the following statement to Variety, saying he never abused Lingafelt and is reviewing his legal options: “I never abused my ex-girlfriend or did so many of the other things Melissa falsely claimed on her TikTok video. As our relationship ended — more than a decade ago — we, unfortunately, both called each other terrible names, as often happens when couples are breaking up. But that is it. Clearly, Melissa still felt close enough to me just last year that she was comfortable reaching out to ask me to provide her with financial support during a tough time (which I did). I do not know if today’s behavior is some kind of misguided quest for more money or attention. But I cannot and will not allow these offensive and defamatory allegations to go unchallenged and I am reviewing my legal options.”

In her video Wednesday, Lingafelt said: “First, I would like to start out with saying I don’t really care if anyone believes me as this is my story and my life and something I went through. It wasn’t until recently that I actually realized that abuse is something that all women have to go through. When I started dating Drake, I was 16. I was home-schooled, I moved in with him, I was singing. It wasn’t until about a year when the verbal abuse started. And when I say verbal abuse, imagine the worst type of verbal abuse you could ever imagine, and that was what I got. It then turned into physical — hitting, throwing, everything. At the pinnacle of it, he drug me down the stairs of our house in Los Feliz. My face hit every step on the way down. I have photos of this.”

Bell, 34, is best known for his work on the Nickelodeon shows “The Amanda Show” and “Drake & Josh.”

Lingafelt also said, “I don’t event want to get into the underage girls thing. I mean I will, but I’m scared.”

In the video, Lingafelt shared several red carpet photos and home photos of herself and Bell. At the end, she also flipped through a photo album of them and showed a box of pictures.


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“My autism is not a superpower. It also isn’t some kind of god-forsaken, endless fountain of suffering inflicted on my family. It’s just part of who I am as a person”. - Sara Luterman


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14 Dec 2020, 10:22 am

Former aide accuses Andrew Cuomo of sexual harassment

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A former aide to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said Sunday that he sexually harassed her for several years while she worked in his office.

Lindsay Boylan, the former deputy secretary for economic development and a special adviser to Cuomo from 2015 to 2018, said the governor frequently harassed her and that numerous people saw it take place.

"I could never anticipate what to expect: would I be grilled on my work (which was very good) or harassed about my looks. Or would it be both in the same conversation?” Boylan said in a tweet.

Boylan, who is currently a candidate for Manhattan borough president, challenged House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) in the 2020 Democratic primaries. She alluded to her allegations earlier this month, tweeting that the governor’s office was the “most toxic team environment” she had ever worked in

“There is simply no truth to these claims,” Caitlin Girouard, a spokesperson for Cuomo’s office, told The Hill in a statement on Monday.


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“My autism is not a superpower. It also isn’t some kind of god-forsaken, endless fountain of suffering inflicted on my family. It’s just part of who I am as a person”. - Sara Luterman


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19 Jan 2021, 9:37 am

New York Mets Mets fire general manager Jared Porter

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The Mets on Tuesday fired general manager Jared Porter, less than a day after an ESPN report revealed he sent explicit text messages to a female reporter in 2016.

“In my initial press conference, I spoke about the importance of integrity, and I meant it,” team owner Steve Cohen wrote on Twitter. “There should be zero tolerance for this type of behavior.”

The Mets have not announced immediate plans for a replacement.

Team officials spent Monday evening internally reviewing the incident regarding Porter, who sent inappropriate text messages to a foreign female reporter, according to an ESPN story. Per the story, Porter met and began texting with a foreign female reporter in 2016, including more than 60 messages that did not receive responses. In response to an ESPN reporter's inquiry, Porter acknowledged texting the woman, but he denied that he sent explicit photos of himself.

“Jared’s actions, as reflected by events disclosed last night, failed to meet the Mets’ standards for professionalism and personal conduct,” team president Sandy Alderson said in a statement.

In a previous statement on Monday, Alderson said he was made aware of Porter’s actions for the first time that evening. Alderson said that Porter “has acknowledged to me his serious error in judgment, taken responsibility for his conduct, has expressed remorse and has previously apologized for his actions.”


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“My autism is not a superpower. It also isn’t some kind of god-forsaken, endless fountain of suffering inflicted on my family. It’s just part of who I am as a person”. - Sara Luterman


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03 Feb 2021, 2:03 am

CAA Drops Marilyn Manson Following Abuse Allegations from Evan Rachel Wood and Others: Reports

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Following allegations of sexual and emotional abuse, Marilyn Manson has reportedly been dropped by CAA.

On Tuesday, the 52-year-old musician, whose real name is Brian Warner, was dropped by the talent agency, which provides representation for individuals across various mediums, according to multiple outlets.

Manson, who has called the allegations "horrible distortions of reality," could not be reached for comment about the reported action by CAA.

Earlier on Monday, Wood, 33, shared a statement on social media in which she alleged that she had been repeatedly sexually assaulted a decade ago. Claiming that Manson started "grooming" her as a teen and "horrifically abused" her for years, the Westworld actress added in her Instagram post, "I was brainwashed and manipulated into submission."

The star went on to say she was revealing the identity of the musician because she is "done living in fear of retaliation, slander or blackmail," and noted, "I am here to expose this dangerous man and call out the many industries that have enabled him, before he ruins any more lives."

Along with her own post, shared to her Instagram feed, the Across the Universe actress also re-posted several others' accounts of Manson's alleged behavior to her Instagram Story, including photographer Ashley Walters, model Sarah McNeilly, an artist, who identified herself only as Gabriella, and more.

Manson's record label, Loma Vista Recordings, previously announced it will no longer work with the singer in their own social media statement on Monday as well.

Earlier on Monday, Manson's artist page on the label's website had been removed, according to Billboard.

AMC's Shudder has also pulled Manson's upcoming segment on Creepshow, PEOPLE previously confirmed.


Los Angeles Angels suspend pitching coach Mickey Callaway after reported misconduct
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The Los Angeles Angels have suspended pitching coach Mickey Callaway in the wake of a report by The Athletic in which five women accused Callaway of lewd behavior

Callaway has initially denied wrongdoing, a source told ESPN, which prevents the Angels from firing him without the just cause that could be procured from an investigation. MLB and the Angels are hoping to wrap up that investigation relatively soon, perhaps before the start of spring training, the source said.

The five women, all of whom spoke to The Athletic anonymously and work in sports media, accused Callaway of inappropriate behavior that included sending shirtless photos, requesting nude pictures and, in one instance, thrusting his crotch in a reporter's face while she attempted an interview. The behavior spanned five years and his employment with three organizations, including his stint as Cleveland Indians pitching coach and New York Mets manager.

In an emailed response to The Athletic on Monday, Callaway wrote: "Rather than rush to respond to these general allegations of which I have just been made aware, I look forward to an opportunity to provide more specific responses. Any relationship in which I engaged has been consensual, and my conduct was in no way intended to be disrespectful to any women involved. I am married and my wife has been made aware of these general allegations."


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“My autism is not a superpower. It also isn’t some kind of god-forsaken, endless fountain of suffering inflicted on my family. It’s just part of who I am as a person”. - Sara Luterman


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22 Feb 2021, 4:31 pm

Deal reached in suit alleging James Franco sexual misconduct

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A tentative settlement has been reached in a lawsuit that alleged James Franco intimidated students at an acting and film school he founded into gratuitous and exploitative sexual situations, attorneys for the plaintiffs said Saturday.

The two sides filed a joint status report in Los Angeles Superior Court telling a judge a settlement had been reached in the class-action lawsuit brought by former students at the now-defunct school, Studio 4, though elements of the lawsuit may live on.

Actresses and ex-students Sarah Tither-Kaplan and Toni Gaal, who first filed the lawsuit in 2019, have agreed to drop their individual claims under the agreement, according to the court filing. Their lawsuit said Franco pushed his students into performing in increasingly explicit sex scenes on camera in an “orgy type setting” that went far beyond those acceptable on Hollywood film sets.

It alleged that Franco “sought to create a pipeline of young women who were subjected to his personal and professional sexual exploitation in the name of education,” and that students were led to believe roles in Franco’s films would be available to those who went along.

The lawsuit said the incidents occurred in a master class on sex scenes that Franco taught at Studio 4, which opened in 2014 and closed in 2017.

Plaintiffs’ attorneys from the firm of Valli Kane & Vagnini, LLP, confirmed the agreement in a statement to The Associated Press on Saturday night, adding that it will be “further memorialized in a Joint Stipulation of Settlement to be filed with the Court at a later date,” but giving no further comment or details.

After-hours emails seeking comment from attorneys for the defendants were not immediately returned.

The lawsuit also names Franco’s production company Rabbit Bandini and his partners including Vince Jolivette and Jay Davis as defendants.

The sexual exploitation allegations of other plaintiffs in the class action will be dismissed without prejudice, meaning they may be re-filed, the joint status report said.

Fraud allegations brought by those plaintiffs will be “subjected to limited release,” the document says, without further details or explanation.

The document does not reveal how much money may be involved in the deal.


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“My autism is not a superpower. It also isn’t some kind of god-forsaken, endless fountain of suffering inflicted on my family. It’s just part of who I am as a person”. - Sara Luterman


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19 Mar 2021, 9:23 pm

Woman Accuses Armie Hammer of Rape Amid LAPD Investigation

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During a Thursday press conference with attorney Gloria Allred, a woman named Effie accused embattled actor Armie Hammer of rape, with the LAPD confirming to The Hollywood Reporter that Hammer is a suspect in a sexual assault case that was opened Feb 3.

"On April 24, 2017, Armie Hammer violently raped me for over four hours in Los Angeles," said Effie, who did not offer her full name but was described by Allred as a "24-year-old woman who lives in Europe." During the time of the alleged rape, Effie says Hammer repeatedly slammed her head against a wall resulting in bruises to her face, and "committed other acts of violence against me, to which I did not consent." The latter included beating her feet with a riding crop, she said.

"During those four hours, I tried to get away but he wouldn't let me. I thought he was going to kill me. Then [he] left with no concern for my well-being," said Effie.

The woman says she first met Hammer over Facebook in 2016 when she was 20 years old and entered into an on-and-off relationship between 2016 to 2020. "He abused me mentally, emotionally and sexually," said Effie of the relationship.

Hammer denies the claims. After the presser ended on Thursday, the actor's lawyer, Andrew Brettler, said in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter that Effie's "own correspondence with Mr. Hammer undermines and refutes her outrageous allegations. As recently as July 18, 2020, [Effie] sent graphic texts to Mr. Hammer telling him what she wanted him to do to her. Mr. Hammer responded making it clear that he did not want to maintain that type of relationship with her."

Hammer’s lawyer included a text message correspondence alleged to be between Hammer and Effie, saying it is "one of hundreds" Effie has sent to Hammer. The correspondence has been viewed by THR. The statement included Effie's last name, which THR is choosing not to publish, as Allred did not disclose Effie's full legal name.

Effie says that after the alleged rape she had suicidal thoughts and offered: "I tried so hard to justify his actions, even to the point of responding to him in a way that did not reflect my true feelings."

She added on Thursday, "In speaking out today, I hope to keep others from falling victim to him in the future."

Allred says that Effie has provided evidence of Hammer's alleged sexual abuse to law enforcement, noting that photos of Effie's "visible injuries" do exist.

Hammer first faced backlash in early January when several disturbing, unverified comments and conversations attributed to the actor surfaced on social media that outlined emotional abuse, manipulation and coercion. One of the accounts that shared anonymous messages was @houseofeffi.

Several days after screenshots of messages appeared on social media, Hammer departed the Jennifer Lopez movie Shotgun Wedding and offered in a January statement: “I’m not responding to these BS claims but in light of the vicious and spurious online attacks against me, I cannot in good conscience now leave my children for 4 months to shoot a film in the Dominican Republic." Hammer would later exit the making-of The Godfather series set at Paramount Plus and, a week later, was dropped by his agency WME.

In a January interview, a former girlfriend of Hammer's, Paige Lorenze, accused the actor of coercing her into an aggressive sexual relationship that left her with bruising and the letter "A" cut into her pelvis region, the result of Hammer using a knife to carve his initial during sex. Hammer's attorney responded to the claims in a statement, offering, "These assertions about Mr. Hammer are patently untrue. Any interactions with this person, or any partner of his, were completely consensual in that they were fully discussed, agreed upon, and mutually participatory."

In his statement on Thursday in response to Effie's claims, Hammer's attorney said: "It was never Mr. Hammer’s intention to embarrass or expose [Effie's] fetishes or kinky sexual desires, but she has now escalated this matter to another level by hiring a civil lawyer to host a public press conference. With the truth on his side, Mr. Hammer welcomes the opportunity to set the record straight."

He went on to describe Effie's claims an "attention-seeking and ill-advised legal bid," and said, "From day one, Mr. Hammer has maintained that all of his interactions with [Effie] — and every other sexual partner of his for that matter — have been completely consensual, discussed and agreed upon in advance, and mutually participatory."


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“My autism is not a superpower. It also isn’t some kind of god-forsaken, endless fountain of suffering inflicted on my family. It’s just part of who I am as a person”. - Sara Luterman


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26 Mar 2021, 3:53 pm

USC agrees to $1.1 billion in settlement with hundreds of women alleging abuse by gynecologist

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The University of Southern California has agreed to pay more than $1 billion in settlements to those who accused former student health center gynecologist George Tyndall of repeated sexual assaults on female patients.

A Los Angeles County Superior Court approved a deal Thursday that would give 710 women who alleged that they were abused by Tyndall an $852 million settlement. That is in addition to a $215 million settlement that was given final approval last year as part of a different federal class action lawsuit.

Tyndall was arrested in 2019 and charged with 18 counts of sexual penetration and 11 counts of sexual battery by fraud in cases involving multiple young women. Prosecutors also charged him with five counts of sexual penetration of an unconscious person and one count of sexual battery by fraud last year.

Tyndall has pleaded not guilty. His trial is pending.

The allegations span 2009 to 2016, with hundreds of women having come forward with their own accusations against Tyndall, Los Angeles police have said previously. Some of the allegations fall outside the statute of limitations for criminal charges to be filed.

Detectives found more than 1,000 videos described as "homemade sex tapes" and a number of sexually explicit photographs during a search at Tyndall's home. Not all were made through his employment at the university.

An investigation by the Education Department's civil rights office found that USC mishandled the allegations during Tyndall's employment, which may have allowed abuse to continue.

USC agreed in light the federal investigation's findings to create a centralized record-keeping system to track misconduct complaints against employees and what actions school officials take in response.


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“My autism is not a superpower. It also isn’t some kind of god-forsaken, endless fountain of suffering inflicted on my family. It’s just part of who I am as a person”. - Sara Luterman


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23 Apr 2021, 3:35 pm

Author Blake Bailey accused of abusing ex-Lusher students' trust for sex; denies illegal conduct

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A celebrated literary biographer who taught eighth-grade English at New Orleans’ Lusher Middle School in the 1990s is now facing accusations that he fostered close relationships with girls he taught and then exploited their trust to pursue sex with them early in their adulthood.

Three of Blake Bailey’s former students described sexual encounters with him in interviews with The Times-Picayune | New Orleans Advocate, with one accusing him of rape, after he spent years staying in contact with them under the guise of mentorship. A fourth said she fled from a bar meet-up during her freshman year in college when he slid his hand up her thigh following a series of suggestive remarks.

They are part of a broader group of former students who spoke in interviews about how Bailey would banter flirtatiously with them, invite them to discuss their love lives with him while they were still in high school and assign them the novel “Lolita.” That book centers on a literature professor who forces his underage stepdaughter into a sexual relationship.

Bailey, who is now 57 and lives in Virginia, forwarded an email seeking comment on the allegations to New Orleans defense attorney Billy Gibbens. Gibbens issued a statement Tuesday that read, “Mr. Bailey has never acted inappropriately with any student and has never received any complaints about his time at Lusher more than 20 years ago.”

Gibbens’ statement continued: “It is absurd to suggest that he was grooming students for anticipated encounters as adults many years later. The allegations in your email are false, hurtful descriptions of conduct between adults. Mr. Bailey has never treated a woman inappropriately and has never forced himself on a woman.”

The statement reflected an argument Bailey has made directly to a few of the women who are now coming forward, some of whom have confronted him.

“Whatever the rumor mill says, I had sex with no minors or students who were my students at the time,” Bailey wrote in an email to one of the women who said she had a sexual encounter with him and agreed to be interviewed on the condition of anonymity. “My behavior was deplorable, but I did nothing illegal

The allegations have already resulted in professional consequences for Bailey, whose newly released “Philip Roth: The Biography” recently landed on the New York Times bestseller list.

The publisher of the book, W.W. Norton & Company, said Wednesday that it would stop distributing and promoting the biography "pending any further information that may emerge." A company spokesperson added: "These allegations are serious."

Bailey's literary agency, The Story Factory, also said Sunday it had fired Bailey “immediately after (learning) of the disturbing allegations made against (him).”

When asked about Bailey’s time at Lusher, the principal at the time, Kathy Riedlinger, said through a spokesperson that he left the school on his own terms to pursue a career in writing. The spokesperson, Cheron Brylski, said she was not aware of any complaints of inappropriate behavior against Bailey while he taught at the magnet school for about nine years beginning in 1992.

Bailey’s past at Lusher came to the forefront following critical acclaim for his 900-page volume on Roth, which was released earlier this month. He has also penned successful biographies about authors John Cheever and Richard Yates.

The women now coming forward said it’s been difficult to watch Bailey's reputation rise steadily. Peyton recently sent a letter to The New York Times, outlining how former students felt he “used our trust in him against us in the cruelest and most intimate way possible.”

A classmate of Peyton’s sent a similar letter — but then also publicly posted it under a review from Edward Champion, who writes a blog about culture and found Bailey’s latest biography to be misogynistic.

“Bailey … systematically groomed 12- and 13-year-olds,” she said in her comment, which was initially left under her real name, though she later deleted the remark and asked the newspaper not to identify her. “We cannot deny that he waited until we were no longer his students to cajole, coerce and rape us, and we also cannot deny the deep and lasting betrayal of trust that his actions ignited.”


The Blake Bailey Fiasco Implicates Everyone
Quote:
When the Los Angeles Times asked Blake Bailey what he thought about Laura Marsh’s review of his Philip Roth biography in The New Republic, he replied, “That was harsh. I mean, wow.” He had a heavier hitter on his side, anyway: “David Remnick of The New Yorker says that I’m ‘uncowed,’ that I let the repellent in, that I present an extremely flawed man,” he said. “And if you weigh the reviews so far, most are on the David Remnick side.”

Bailey casually name-dropped the editor of The New Yorker with the confidence of a man who knows the system backs him. Until this week, he wasn’t wrong: When Philip Roth: The Biography came out earlier this month, The New York Times alone published a raft of articles that amounted to a publicity push for Bailey, including a guide to the coverage by Taffy Brodesser-Akner. Her own favorites were a flattering profile of Bailey by Mark Oppenheimer for—you guessed it—The New York Times Magazine and Cynthia Ozick’s glowing review of the book for The New York Times Book Review. Ozick called the book a “narrative masterwork,” while Oppenheimer described Bailey as one of the “great chroniclers of this country’s literary lives,” a talent almost on par with Roth himself. As if to accentuate the point, he noted that Bailey had inherited Roth’s Eames chair, the ottoman of which was referred to as “Nicole’s seat,” because Nicole Kidman supposedly used to sit there at Roth’s knee.

These allegations first came to light in the comments section of a literary blogger’s website, then quickly spread to the mainstream. One of the women additionally told the Times Picayune/New Orleans Advocate that she had previously sent a letter to The New York Times describing Bailey’s exploitation of students.

It’s painful on many levels, therefore, that the Times itself next reported that a woman says Bailey raped her in 2015 at the home of Dwight Garner, of all people—a book critic employed by the Times. This woman, Valentina Rice, says she warned Bailey’s publisher, W.W. Norton, about him

Furthermore, Rice also contacted a Times reporter; the Times says the reporter followed up but that Rice did not reply.

But what effect will this “scandal”—a glamorous word for what is really a parade of boring horrors—have on the reputation of Bailey’s champions? And why was it so hard for critics and journalists and book editors alike to see a misogynistic strain in Bailey that is now glaringly apparent?

The critics might defend themselves by saying they had no clue about Bailey’s personal life. But in fact he has a history of sexist remarks.

Roth hand-picked Bailey for the job of writing his biography. He was jealous of his legacy and had fired a previous biographer who had a “mean, insatiably vilifying spirit,” according to the great writer. It seemed suspicious, Marsh wrote, that Bailey would write about Roth’s hatred for his ex-wives so unquestioningly. Bailey seemed eager to defend Roth on “his own terms,” Marsh argued, and to help him take posthumous revenge on the women who had dared to criticize him in public.

That critical failure to suss Bailey out is a horrible mirror to the revelations of recent days. At least two women tried to tell the Times about Bailey, one of the alleged rapes took place at the house of one of the Times’ chief book critics, and Bailey’s publisher was also alerted of the accusations against him. With one section of the Times over-fêting Bailey’s book and another belatedly reporting on his alleged sex crimes, the Times has fallen afoul of that perennial newspaperly danger—the appearance of a conflict of interest—and seems to have no idea what to do about it.

This conundrum has been compounded by the way Bailey and Roth occupy a similar position in the culture—very successful white literary men with a reputation for licentiousness—which makes their fates appear entwined. This confusion is especially tricky because much of the Times’ seemingly sycophantic coverage of the biography was really about Roth, not Bailey.

Bailey is the story now, but Roth still looms over it all. This fiasco has tendrils reaching into every level of media and publishing. The mistakes that have been made by W.W. Norton and outlets like the Times are the consequence of a literary culture that lets profitable artists like Roth bend sycophants to their will while cutting out those who displease them altogether. Much has been made of Norton taking the unusual step of halting printing of Bailey’s book, but can you imagine it canceling Bailey’s contract right before the book’s publication? And based on what—a letter from a woman? What’s a letter compared to being anointed by Philip Roth himself?


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23 Apr 2021, 3:59 pm

If it was consensual, nothing illegal happened. Mentor/mentee sexual relationships have been happening----since time began.

If it wasn't consensual, it was rape.

Unfortunately, it's possible that these women felt like they had to consent....maybe the guy was putting pressure upon them. This happens.

I hope there isn't a "revenge" motive within these women in a situation where they fully consented, then felt hurt that he broke up with them or something to that effect.

And I hope the women didn't actually feel exploited by the guy, but were afraid to convey those feelings to others.



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24 Apr 2021, 12:07 am

it smells.



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29 Apr 2021, 4:23 pm

Publisher pulls Philip Roth bio, cuts ties with author

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The publisher of a highly anticipated and widely discussed biography of Philip Roth is pulling the book and cutting ties with author Blake Bailey, who faces multiple allegations of sexual harassment and assault. W.W. Norton and Company previously released Bailey’s memoir “The Splendid Things We Planned.”

“Norton is permanently putting out of print our editions of ‘Philip Roth: The Biography’ and ‘The Splendid Things We Planned,’ Blake Bailey’s 2014 memoir,” the publisher announced Tuesday. “Mr. Bailey will be free to seek publication elsewhere if he chooses. In addition, Norton will make a donation in the amount of the book advance for ‘Philip Roth: The Biography’ to organizations that fight against sexual assault or harassment and work to protect survivors.”

Norton has acknowledged being contacted, anonymously, by a woman in 2018 who alleged that Bailey had assaulted her three years earlier. The publisher never responded directly to the email, sent by Bloomsbury sales and marketing vice president Valentina Rice, and instead forwarded it to Bailey. Rice first went public with her allegations last week in The New York Times and confirmed her account with the AP.

The alleged assault took place at the home of Times book critic Dwight Garner, who was informed by Rice soon after it happened and, at Rice’s request, did not until recently tell anyone at the paper. The Times had covered Bailey’s book extensively, including a long profile of Bailey that ran in its Sunday magazine. Garner did not review the Roth biography.

“Our critic acted appropriately and ethically by honoring the wishes of his friend, Ms. Rice, who confided in him in 2015 and asked him not to share the allegation,” a Times spokesperson told the AP. “And it was at Ms. Rice’s request that Dwight spoke with The Times.”

Bailey, whose Roth book came out in early April, has denied any wrongdoing. His attorney, Billy Gibbens, condemned Norton, while noting that “Philip Roth” is still being sold overseas.

The Roth biography may also remain available in the U.S. as an audiobook, which was released by a separate company, Recorded Books Inc. The audio publisher did not immediately respond to a request from the AP about the book’s status.

Few literary biographies had been so awaited. Bailey, known previously for his acclaimed biographies of authors John Cheever and Richard Yates, had worked on the Roth book since 2012, had extensive access to the author’s papers and to Roth, who died in 2018. “Philip Roth” reached the New York Times bestseller list and reviews have been mostly positive, though some critics found him too indulgent of Roth and how he treated women. Debates over the relevance of an author’s private behavior to his work, which Roth also confronted in his lifetime, now extend to Bailey.


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02 May 2021, 8:50 am

Schoolgirl Faces Rape Threats, Gets Accused Of Being Autistic After Exposing Teacher’s Rape Jokes

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A schoolgirl Ain, 17, recently revealed on Twitter that her male teacher made rape jokes during a Physical Education class.

According to her, the teacher explained there were many laws protecting sexual abuse against minors, hence you should “rape girls when they are older than 18, not the ones younger than 18”.

Allegedly, the teacher also said that if boys were raped, they wouldn’t report it because it feels good for them.

The video quickly went viral on Malaysian social media over the weekend, as Ain revealed the deep-seated sexism and tolerence for sexual harassment that exists in our school system.

After her initial shock at the male teacher’s rape joke, she reached out to her counselling teacher for help. Shockingly, the counselling teacher dismissed her completely.

According to a screenshot of texts shared, the counsellor told her that male teachers tend to teach to male students, and that it was normal to joke like that.

Additionally, the counsellor also said that Ain was being too emotional and sensitive because she is a girl, and then proceed to suggest a therapy session.

Ain’s father then took her to the police station so she could lodge a police report.

In a Facebook post, her father Saiful Nizam recounted how immediately after, he and his daughter received backlash from school authorities, teachers, fellow parents, and other students for the action.

Many claimed that the family had disgraced the name of the school by lodging the police report. Many more claimed that such rape jokes were common and should be taken as just a joke.

Later on, another schoolteacher from Ain’s school allegedly claimed that Ain is autistic in an attempt to invalidate her response on the matter.

While there were people who criticized the family for “taking a joke too seriously”, others flooded to support them. Ain’s Twitter hashtag #MakeSchoolASaferPlace was trending the whole weekend, with many fellow female students stepping up to share their stories of experiencing similar instances of sexual harrassment.

Ain’s father is also supportive of her, saying that she has a right to feel safe in her school environment.


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03 May 2021, 3:10 pm

Marilyn Manson Sued for Sexual Assault, Sex Trafficking by ‘Game of Thrones’ Actress Esmé Bianco

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Game of Thrones actress Esmé Bianco has sued Marilyn Manson and his former manager, Tony Ciulla, alleging that the singer raped and sexually battered her. The complaint, filed Friday in the United States District Court for the Central District of California, also claims that Manson, whose real name is Brian Warner, Ciulla, and Ciulla’s management company violated human-trafficking laws by bringing her from London to Los Angeles under the pretense that she would be acting in a music video that never came out and a film that was never made.

The British actress, who played Ros on the hit HBO show, was one of more than a dozen women to speak out against the shock-rocker earlier this year. In February, she detailed the alleged abuse stemming from her relationship with Warner when they were a couple in 2011 in an interview with New York magazine. On Friday, she added fresh claims in the new legal filing.

“Mr. Warner used drugs, force, and threats of force to coerce sexual acts from Ms. Bianco on multiple occasions,” the lawsuit says. “Mr. Warner raped Ms. Bianco in or around May 2011.” It goes on to claim that Warner “committed sexual acts” with Bianco at times when she was unconscious or unable to consent, and lists the ways she claims he sexually battered her: “These acts include spanking, biting, cutting, and whipping Ms. Bianco’s buttocks, breasts, and genitals for Mr. Warner’s sexual gratification — all without the consent of Plaintiff.”

Bianco alleges that Warner violated California laws for sexual assault and sexual battery, further claiming that Warner and Ciulla violated the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act. Ciulla Management — the company founded by Ciulla that has managed the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Rob Zombie, Tove Lo, and others over the years — is also named as a defendant in the last claim. Ciulla represented Warner for more than 25 years before cutting ties with him in February following the assault allegations.

According to the complaint, Warner engaged in human trafficking when he “employed fraud” in enticing Bianco to the United States to appear in a music video for his song “I Want to Kill You Like They Do in the Movies” and a never-made horror film based on the works of Lewis Carroll called Phantasmagoria. “He promised work opportunities that never appeared while inserting himself in her visa process,” the complaint says. He continued his fraud, she alleges, when he “[directed] Ms. Bianco to draft paperwork to confirm that she would star in his upcoming film.” Furthermore, the filing adds, “By inserting himself in Ms. Bianco’s visa process, Mr. Warner was able to control Ms. Bianco by threatening to withdraw support if she displeased him.” At one point, she claims, he prevented her from escaping by locking her in a bedroom.

Bianco also alleged he forced her to perform “unpaid labor,” violating U.S. law regarding human trafficking. “This included serving and preparing food for Mr. Warner and his guests, cleaning his apartment, consulting on his album, providing uncredited backup vocals during the creative process for the album Born Villain, and being offered up to his guests and bandmates to ‘spank,'” the lawsuit alleges. “Mr. Warner implied that because he had brought Ms. Bianco to the United States and provided housing, she owed him labor and sexual intimacy.”

“For far too long, my abuser has been left unchecked, enabled by money, fame, and an industry that turned a blind eye,” she adds. “Despite the numerous brave women who have spoken out against Marilyn Manson, countless survivors remain silenced, and some of their voices will never be heard. My hope is that by raising mine, I will help to stop Brian Warner from shattering any more lives and empower other victims to seek their own small measure of justice.”

“These claims are provably false,” Manson’s attorney, Howard King, says in a statement Rolling Stone. “To be clear, this suit was only filed after my client refused to be shaken down by Ms. Bianco and her lawyer and give in to their outrageous financial demands based on conduct that simply never occurred. We will vigorously contest these allegations in court and are confident that we will prevail.”

In addition to her allegations of sexual abuse, she claims Warner controlled her by giving her drugs and depriving her of food and sleep. This was, the suit says, “in order to weaken her physically and mentally and decrease her ability to refuse him.” Bianco is seeking unspecified damages for the abuse she says she suffered.

Bianco claims that Ciulla and his management company are also responsible because they benefited financially from “allowing this abuse to continue.” Additionally, she claims that Ciulla Management was aware of the way Warner’s assistant would serve as a “babysitter” when the singer wasn’t around.

During the shoot, Bianco claims Warner acted erratically, at one point breaking his camera in a fit of anger. She says he made her watch a movie so violent that she fainted, and that he tried to force her to perform sexual acts with another woman on camera. “Perhaps most horrifyingly, Mr. Warner locked Ms. Bianco in the bedroom, tied her to a prayer kneeler, and beat her with a whip that Mr. Warner said was utilized by the Nazis,” the lawsuit says. “He also electrocuted her.”

In May 2009, the lawsuit continues, Warner flew to London and he and Bianco struck up a consensual sexual relationship. During this time, though, he allegedly groped her in public without her consent and made her adhere to a dress code.

On one occasion, Mr. Warner chased Plaintiff around the apartment with an ax, smashing holes in the walls,” the lawsuit claims. “On another occasion, Mr. Warner cut Ms. Bianco with a Nazi knife during sex, without her consent, and photographed the cuts on her body. He then posted the photos online without her consent. Mr. Warner’s friends, bandmates, assistant, producer, and other colleagues witnessed various aspects of this abuse — including Mr. Ciulla.”


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