Following the news that Asia Argento has been accused of sexually assaulting then-17-year-old child actor Jimmy Bennett, Rose McGowan, another prominent voice in the #MeToo movement, has released a statement on the matter.
"There absolutely should be no leeway or tolerance for sexual assault. Hard stop. NONE," McGowan wrote. "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. I’ve never claimed to be perfect. This week especially has made me come to terms with the fact that we all have a lot of growing to do, including myself."
Argento is accused of having sex with Bennett in a California hotel room in 2013. After Bennett, who is now 22, reportedly threatened legal action, the two reached a settlement of $380,000.
McGowan explained that Argento allegedly confessed to model and activist Rain Dove that she had slept with Bennet. McGowan also said it was Dove who provided their text exchange with Argento to authorities.
"I had sex with him and it felt weird. I didn’t know he was a minor until the shakedown letter. The public knows nothing, only what NYT wrote. Which is one-sided. The shakedown letter. The horny kid jumped me," Argento reportedly wrote via text, per TMZ. Argento previously denied the allegations.
Argento, who is 42, has been fired from her job as a judge on X Factor Italy in the wake of the accusations, Deadlinereports. Despite the firing, Argento will appear on the season's first seven episodes, as they have already been filmed.
Read McGowan's statement in full below:
"I would first of all like to start off this statement saying thank you for your patience. A lot of people have been demanding answers and a response to the recent events surrounding Asia Argento’s sexual assault case. Many people believe that because we have been close in each other’s lives over the past year that perhaps I am affiliated with this incident or being complicit. I am not.