Actress Paz de la Huerta is the latest Hollywood star to accuse heavy-weight producer Harvey Weinstein of abuse.
According to the "Boardwalk Empire" actress, Weinstein first sexually assaulted her when she was 26.
They met at the Top of the Standard bar at the Standard, High Line hotel in Manhattan in 2010 before the assault.
She was first acquainted with the producer when she was 14 and working on Cider House Rules. A few years later, he sent her a series of books, telling her she would be great for one of his upcoming projects.
Then, in 2010, about five years after he had contacted her, he offered her a ride home as she left the bar. At her door, the producer demanded to come inside and have a drink. From then on, she said, “[t]hings got very uncomfortable very fast.”
According to her account, the producer forcefully kissed her as she tried to brush him away. He then proceeded to force himself against her, raping her.
“I kind of just laid on the bed in shock,” after he left, she added.
The second time he assaulted her, Weinstein allegedly showed up at her doorstep after repeatedly calling her. She had asked him to leave her alone, and yet he insisted, she explained.
At the time, she had been drinking, so when he showed up, he reportedly hushed her and told her they should go to her apartment to talk things over.
“I was in no state. I was so terrified of him,” she said. “... I did say no, and when he was on top of me I said, ‘I don’t want to do this.’ He kept humping me and it was disgusting. He’s like a pig. ... He raped me.”
After the second assault, she “laid there feeling sick. He looked at me and said, ‘I’ll put you in a play.’ He left and I never heard from him again. He knew he had done a bad thing.”
De la Huerta’s case stands out among the others because it could lead to actual prosecution.
Since the two instances of abuse took place within New York’s statute of limitations, prosecutors may use her story to bring charges against the producer.
After New York Police Department detective Nicholas DiGaudio confirmed de la Huerta has talked to him, he told reporters that they “have enough to make an arrest.”
As police in Los Angeles and in London work on their own Weinstein-related accusations, saying they intend to pursue potential criminal cases, de la Huerta attempts to recover from what she went through after the abuse.
“I was very traumatized,” de la Huerta said. “I don’t think I was taking very good care of myself. What happened with Harvey left me scarred for many years. I felt so disgusted by it, with myself ... I became a little self-destructive. It was really hard for me to deal, to cope.”
It’s truly tragic that it took this many years and at least 60 women to be abused and victimized for Weinstein to be brought to justice. Hopefully, de la Huerta’s story — along with others — will give officials enough to work with so he can finally answer for his alleged crimes.
Banner and thumbnail image credit: Reuters/Allison Joyce