Trigger warning: This article discusses sexual assault.
This article originally appeared on InStyle.com by Isabel Jones.
Cole Sprouse and Lili Reinhart have both spoken out following a spate of sexual assault allegations against both of them as well as Riverdale co-stars KJ Apa and Vanessa Morgan. It began on Sunday morning when Twitter user @Victori66680029, shared her first tweet, a thread detailing the alleged sexual abuse Sprouse subjected her to at an NYU party in 2013.
More anonymous accounts came forward with allegations against Sprouse’s castmates, many of which adhered to a similar handle pattern: a woman’s name followed by a series of numbers.
Reinhart’s accuser, @Tasha93948576 seemingly admitted to the falsity of the claims, tweeting, “Do you see how easy it is lie and you guys will believe it? Vanessa Morgan and Kj Apa didn’t do jack shit. You will believe anything.” The account has since been deleted.
Sprouse addressed the tweets on Sunday evening, writing, “Earlier today myself and three other cast mates were falsely accused of sexual offense by anonymous accounts on twitter. I take these accusations very seriously, and will be working with the right teams to get to the root of it.”
“False accusations do tremendous damage to victims of actual assault. Furthermore, I would never seek to silence anybody. I encourage that people look into the accusations themselves, as the events detailed were factually untrue,” he continued. “This seems to be the latest claim in a series of incidents seeking to baselessly cancel my cast mates and me.”
Reinhart shared Sprouse’s thread, tweeting, “I have always taken sexual assault allegations seriously. But it was proven that this account was created specifically to create false stories about me and my cast. I can’t think of something more twisted than lying about sexual assault. It invalidates the men and women who are brave enough to come forward with the truth. This kind of lie can ruin lives and careers—and I can call it a lie because the person who made the allegations already admitted that the stories were fabricated.”
“We are looking into taking legal action. This kind of sick behavior only harms true survivors. This was incredibly triggering for me and scary because I’ve always supported survivors and believed them,” she went on.
“I hope and pray that this does not discourage real survivors from speaking out about their experiences.”
If you are a sexual assault survivor and need help, you can call the National Sexual Assault Telephone Hotline at 1-800-656-4673 to speak to a trained counselor. You can also chat online with a counselor here. Both services are available 24/7.