US actress Rose McGowan has detailed information on the sex abuse allegations against her fellow #MeToo poster girl and close friend, Asia Argento. The 44-year-old McGowan, who was among the first ones to speak up about harassment and sexual abuse in Hollywood and accused producer Harvey Weinstein of impropriate behavior, has issued a special statement on the reports that 42-year-old Argento assaulted musician and former child actor Jimmy Bennett.
Argento, then 37, allegedly had sex with Bennett several years ago when he was 17, which is below the age of consent in California, where the encounter reportedly took place. According to the New York Times, last October she paid the man, now 22, $380,000 to settle the case and get the compromising photos. Argento has disputed the contents of the article.
McGowan, who called on people to “be gentle” with Argento in the wake of the scandal, now urged her friend to “be the person you wish Harvey could have been.”
According to McGowan’s statement, her partner Rain Dove had shared that Asia started “receiving unsolicited nudes of Jimmy since he had been 12.” According to the whistleblower, Argento “did nothing about it.”
“No reporting to authorities, to the parents, or blocking of Jimmy’s social media. Not even a simple message "Don’t send me these images. They are inappropriate,” her statement reads.
The actress also hinted that there were a few other details, but refused to mention them in a statement “as investigators do their job.”
MacGowan has stated that there should be “no leeway or tolerance” for sexual assault.
“Hard stop. NONE. Victims also shouldn’t be told how they should react or what they should say about their abusers. However as allies to the victim and voyeurs of an event, we should find a better way to balance support of the victim with due process for the accused,” she said in a statement.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department (LASD) said in a statement that they are already in the know about media reports which name Italian actress and director Asia Argento "as being involved in an alleged 2013 incident" with the man.
The LASD's Special Victims Bureau "is attempting to reach out to the reported victim and/or his representatives in an effort to appropriately document any potential criminal allegations," Harris said without naming Bennett.
Right now, the alleged victim is claiming $3.5 million in damages for "intentional infliction of emotional distress, lost wages, assault and battery," which Bennett's lawyers have claimed had traumatized the young actor, damaging his mental health and earning potential.
42-year-old Argento became a leading figure in the #MeToo movement, which was established after more than 80 women, including Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie, came forward with allegations of sexual assault against Weinstein since the New York Times claimed in October 2017 that he had allegedly paid off women who had accused him of sexual assault since the 1980s.
She bonded with McGowan over the issue; they even had travelled to Berlin last month after Argento's boyfriend, celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain, committed suicide.