LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 14: Ed Westwick poses in the Winner's room at the Virgin TV BAFTA Television Awards at The Royal Festival Hall on May 14, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Jeff Spicer/Getty Images)
Photo: Jeff Spicer/Getty Images
Photo: Jeff Spicer/Getty Images

‘Gossip Girl’ actor Ed Westwick responds after actress accuses him of rape

In the post, Cohen wrote that the stories of other victims of sexual assault and harassment made her come forward with her own story. She wrote that the alleged incident happened three years ago when she was in a “dark time” of her life as she dealt with her mother’s cancer diagnosis.

“I didn’t have the support system or time to process and deal with the aftermath of the rape. I buried my pain and guilt to make space for the onslaught that came after my mom’s death, just three months later,” she wrote.“I’ve grown considerably in the three years since my assault, so to revisit (it) is painful. To dig in and relive this night in order to accurately share the events, feels like a continued violation. My stomach is in knots, scared ... to share this publicly, as even fully reconciling with myself has been a tough process.”

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Cohen explained that she was dating an unnamed producer at the time of the alleged assault. She wrote that the two were invited to Westwick’s home, where she met him for the first time.

Cohen wrote that Westwick made a sexual suggestion, and she wanted to leave his home, but the producer didn’t want to make Westwick feel awkward by leaving.

“Ed insisted we stay for dinner. I said I was tired and wanted to leave, trying to get out of what was already an uncomfortable situation,” Cohen wrote.

Cohen claimed that Westwick suggested she retreat to the guest bedroom for a nap and that the producer she was seeing told her they needed to stay for at least another 20 minutes to “smooth everything over.”

“So I went and laid down in the guest room, where I eventually fell asleep. I was woken up abruptly by Ed on top of me,” Cohen wrote, noting that Westwick had begun to touch her inappropriately without her consent. “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 (have sexual intercourse with) me. I was paralyzed, terrified. I couldn’t speak, I could no longer move. He held me down and raped me,” she wrote.

Cohen said the encounter was a nightmare.

She alleged that the producer made her feel like she was to blame, calling her an “active participant” and said that Westwick would “destroy” her if she came forward with the allegations.

“I now realize the ways in which these men in power prey on women and how this tactic is used so frequently in our industry, and surely, in many others,” Cohen wrote.

Cohen said that she hopes her story will help other victims realize “they are not alone, that they are not to blame, and it is not their fault.”

>> See the full Facebook post here

>> Related: Sexual harassment in the workplace: What is it, how to report it and more you should know

Westwick took to Twitter with a statement refuting the allegations on Tuesday.

“I do not know this woman. I have never forced myself in any manner, on any woman. I certainly have never committed rape,” he wrote in the captionless tweet.

This allegation comes as several other big names in Hollywood including Harvery Weinstein and Kevin Spacey have been accused of similar allegations.
>> Related: 8 ‘House of Cards’ employees accuse Kevin Spacey of ‘predatory’ conduct

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