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    ‘Shocked and Bewildered’ George Takei Denies Sexual Assault Allegations

    Former Model Accused Takei of Sexual Assault in 1981

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    “Star Trek” actor and activist George Takei, accused late Friday of sexual assault, today denied the allegations he called “antithetical to my values and my practices.”

    The Hollywood Reporter (THR) reported late Friday that Scott R. Brunton, a former model and actor, “claims that Takei took advantage of [him] when he was most vulnerable” in 1981.

    "This happened a long time ago, but I have never forgotten it," Brunton said in an interview with the outlet. "It is one of those stories you tell with a group of people when people are recounting bizarre instances in their lives, this always comes up. I have been telling it for years, but I am suddenly very nervous telling it." 

    He subsequently detailed his experience with Takei in 1981, when he was 23 and Takei was 43 or 44, when he was working “as a waiter and beginning a career as a commercial actor and model.”

    The two reportedly exchanged numbers and “called one another from time to time as well as [ran] into each other at clubs.” When Brunton broke up with his boyfriend, he said, Takei comforted him. 

    As THR reported:

    Takei, as Brunton tells it, invited him to dinner and the theater. "He was very good at consoling me and understanding that I was upset and still in love with my boyfriend," Brunton says. "He was a great ear. He was very good about me spilling my heart on my sleeve."

    The two men went back to the actor's condo for a drink the same night. "We have the drink and he asks if I would like another," Brunton recalls. "And I said sure. So, I have the second one, and then all of a sudden, I begin feeling very disoriented and dizzy, and I thought I was going to pass out. I said I need to sit down and he said sit over here and he had the giant yellow beanbag chair. So I sat down in that and leaned my head back and I must have passed out."

    "The next thing I remember I was coming to and he had my pants down around my ankles and he was groping my crotch and trying to get my underwear off and feeling me up at the same time, trying to get his hands down my underwear," Brunton says. "I came to and said, 'What are you doing?!' I said, 'I don't want to do this.' He goes, 'You need to relax. I am just trying to make you comfortable. Get comfortable.' And I said, 'No. I don't want to do this.' And I pushed him off and he said, 'OK, fine.' And I said I am going to go and he said, 'If you feel you must. You're in no condition to drive.' I said, 'I don't care I want to go.' So I managed to get my pants up and compose myself and I was just shocked. I walked out and went to my car until I felt well enough to drive home, and that was that."

    THR corroborated Brunton’s account with four of his “longtime friends,” who advised he confided in them about his encounter with the “Star Trek” actor at the time.

    Saturday, George Takei responded, denying the allegations in a series of tweets:

    “Friends,” Takei began, “I'm writing to respond to the accusations made by Scott R. Bruton. I want to assure you all that I am as shocked and bewildered at these claims as you must feel reading them.”

    He continued:

    The events he describes back in the 1980s simply did not occur, and I do not know why he has claimed them now,” he continued. “I have wracked my brain to ask if I remember Mr. Brunton, and I cannot say I do.

    But I do take these claims very seriously, and I wanted to provide my response thoughtfully and not out of the moment. 

    Right now it is a he said / he said situation, over alleged events nearly 40 years ago. But those that know me understand that non-consensual acts are so antithetical to my values and my practices, the very idea that someone would accuse me of this is quite personally painful.

    Brad, who is 100 percent beside me on this, as my life partner of more than 30 years and now my husband, stands fully by my side. I cannot tell you how vital it has been to have his unwavering support and love in these difficult times.

    Thanks to many of you for all the kind words and trust. It means so much to us.

    Yours in gratitude,

    George

    The accusation and denial follows a string of accusations against those in Hollywood, including Kevin Spacey and Harvey Weinstein. Just yesterday, out actress Ellen Page penned an incredibly personal, powerful and moving statement attacking the "abusers" who "make us feel powerless” in the entertainment capital of the world. 

    Accusations continue to abound outside of Hollywood as well. Just this week, candidate for U.S. Senate Roy Moore was accused of  sexual assault on a 14-year old girl when he was a 32-year old assistant district attorney.

    The President of the United States, who Americans learned just over a year ago bragged about committing sexual assault on “Access Hollywood,” joined a a long line of Republicans to defend Roy Moore over the allegations.

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    Image by Gage Skidmore via Flickr and a CC license

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