One of the stars of Bravo’s Southern Charm is now facing serious allegations. As Us Weekly reported, Southern Charm’s Thomas Ravenel has been accused of sexual assault. The allegations came to light after a woman, the daughter of the alleged victim, wrote a blog post detailing the claims.
Update: Bravo issued the following statement to Bustle on Friday, May 4:
"Haymaker, the production company for “Southern Charm,” and Bravo take allegations like these very seriously. Haymaker is conducting an investigation, and once all the information is gathered and carefully reviewed, appropriate action will be taken.”
Warning: This article contains information about sexual assault allegations, which some may find triggering.
Earlier: The woman, Ashley Perkins, claimed in the post that Ravenel sexually assaulted her mother in December 2015 after they matched on Tinder months prior. In the post on her personal blog on April 16, she detailed what allegedly occurred prior to the alleged assault. She wrote — in a series of bullet-points that she labeled as “facts” — “My mom and Mr. Ravenel matched on Tinder in late October 2015. Mr. Ravenel asked my mom out several times before she finally agreed to a ‘date.’” Perkins wrote that she helped her mother get ready for the December date.
She then claimed, “Her wrist didn’t have a mark on them before she entered Mr. Ravenel’s car.” And later continued, and alleged, “I greeted her when Mr. Ravenel dropped her off a few hours later, her wrist was cut and already showing signs of bruising.”
In Perkins’ original blog post, she claimed that Gloria Allred represented her mother in her case and that she and Ravenel settled for a sum of $200,000 in June of 2016. (Allred had no comment for Bustle went contacted about the claims.) She also claimed that the reality star called her mother a year after the alleged December assault, but that she did not answer the call.
In response to the accusations, the Southern Charm star’s lawyer, Richard P. Terbrusch, released a statement to Us Weekly, which reads:
“My client enjoys a certain degree of fame and unfortunately has become — unfairly — a target for an individual who has, in my opinion, dubious motivations.”
Bustle reached out to Terbrusch for additional comment, but did not receive a response at the time of publication.
Additionally, Perkins tells Bustle via an emailed statement,
I want to see Thomas Ravenel removed from Bravo and not just because of what he allegedly did to my mother but because of the negative comments he posts [on social media] on a regular basis.
Also, the way Thomas treats women on the show Southern Charm is totally disrespectful to women everywhere and promotes an antiquated attitude of the “good ole boys” network and “boys will be boys” which is too commonly accepted. I want to see not only Thomas removed from the show but for Bravo to apologize to the audience for allowing Thomas to remain on the show with his reckless, threatening, and demeaning attitude to women.
Bustle reached out to Bravo for comment, but did not receive a response at the time of publication.
Perkins also explained why she came forward with her accusations. She writes,
I hope by coming forward that I will give strength and hope to other women who may feel that because they are in an inferior position with a man — such as a man with money or power — that they are not powerful. These men, such as Thomas Ravenel, are not invincible and they need to be stopped.
Perkins also discussed the allegations during an interview with Fox News on May 2. In her interview, she claimed that the assault occurred on December 25, 2015. She alleged,"[My mother] told me that he grabbed her by the wrist and held her down. He then proceeded to pull his penis out.” Perkins continued with her allegations, “She said 'no' and then he shoved his fingers inside of her vagina and later her anal area."
According to her interview, there were a couple of things that led Perkins to come forward with the accusations now. She claimed to Fox News that while her mother signed an NDA in regards to the alleged incident, she was not bound by one, so she felt compelled to speak out. Perkins also said that she was prompted to share the claims on social media, which is where she first detailed the allegations, after seeing a promo for Ravenel’s series Southern Charm.
After Perkins tweeted about the allegations, one source, Fits News, wrote about her tweet, which seemingly prompted the response on her personal blog. The article also prompted a response from Ravenel’s lawyer. He wrote to the site,
The recent Twitter statements of Ms. Ashley Perkins about my client are reckless, false and defamatory. One can only speculate on her motives, but rest assured once the instant rush of social media wears off and the potential of very real legal consequences sets in, such rashness will be regretted.
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.