A Sexual Assault Allegation Against Ed Westwick Is Now Being Reviewed By The Los Angeles Country D.A.
On Wednesday, Variety reported that the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office is reviewing a sexual assault allegation against Ed Westwick. According to Variety, a spokesperson said the case against Westwick was submitted to the D.A.'s office on Tuesday. Bustle has reached out to both Westwick's lawyer and the D.A.'s office for comment, but didn't receive a response at the time of publication.
UPDATE: The D.A.'s office confirmed with Bustle on Wednesday that the case involving Westwick was presented to them on Tuesday and is under review.
EARLIER: The review stems from an investigation by the Los Angeles Police Department into an allegation made against Westwick by Kristina Cohen. Cohen alleges the former Gossip Girl star raped her in 2014. She first came forward with her allegations on Facebook on Nov. 6.
Warning: This section contains information about rape, which some may find triggering.
She alleged in her Facebook post:
I was woken up abruptly by Ed on top of me, his fingers entering my body. I told him to stop, but he was strong. I fought him off as hard as I could but he grabbed my face in his hands, shaking me, telling me he wanted to f*ck me. I was paralyzed, terrified. I couldn’t speak, I could no longer move. He held me down and raped me.
Westwick denied Cohen's claims on Twitter (his tweet has since been deleted) by writing: "I do not know this woman. I have never forced myself in any manner, on any woman. I certainly have never committed rape."
On Nov. 7, the LAPD confirmed to Bustle Cohen had filed a police report against Westwick alleging sexual assault against him and that the investigation was ongoing. According to Variety, no details from LAPD's case against Westwick were released Wednesday.
Variety also reported California's statute of limitations wouldn't stop Cohen's case. In September 2016, Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill ending the statute of limitations on prosecuting rape cases. The law only applies to crimes committed after Jan. 1, 2017. The former statute of limitations law stated a sexual assault case could only be prosecuted within 10 years after the offense was allegedly committed. Seeing as Cohen's claims the rape occurred in 2014, even though it was before the new law was signed, only four years have passed.
In addition to Cohen, two other women have accused Westwick of sexual assault. On Nov. 9, former actor Aurélie Wynn alleged Westwick raped her in July 2014. Westwick denied Wynn's allegations on Twitter. The tweet has since been deleted, but, according to TIME, he wrote, "It is disheartening and sad to me that as a result of two unverified and provably untrue social media claims, there are some in this environment who could ever conclude I have anything to do with such vile and horrific conduct." He continued, "I have absolutely not, and I am cooperating with the authorities so that they can clear my name as soon as possible."
A third woman, named Rachel Eck, accused Westwick of sexual assault. Unlike with Cohen and Wynn, the 30-year-old actor did not respond to Eck's allegations. Bustle reached out to Westwick's lawyer for comment regarding all of the allegations made by the three women, but did not receive a response.
As a result of the sexual assault allegations, two of Westwick's TV appearances on the BBC were affected. Originally, the BBC canceled Ordeal of Innocence, but has now recast Westwick's role with actor Christian Cooke and will reshoot scenes, Deadline reported in January. Then, there is White Gold, which halted production in November 2017.
The BBC said in a statement given to Variety on Nov. 10:
These are serious allegations which Ed Westwick has strenuously denied. The BBC is not making any judgement but until these matters are resolved we will not include Ordeal by Innocence in the schedules. The independent production company making White Gold has informed us that Ed Westwick has paused from filming while he deals with these allegations.
If you or someone you know has been sexually assaulted, call the National Sexual Assault Telephone Hotline at 800-656-HOPE (4673) or visit online.rainn.org.