Warning: This post contains descriptions of sexual violence.
In 2018, Westworld star Evan Rachel Wood testified to her experience with sexual abuse and domestic violence before Congress on behalf of the Phoenix Act, a piece of legislation aimed at expanding survivors’ rights. Today, she has revealed the identity of (one) abuser she described: ex-fiancé Marilyn Manson, who she further alleges “started grooming” her when she was a teenager and “horrifically abused” her for years. And Wood is far from alone: four other exes of Manson’s have shared their own allegations of physical and sexual abuse, rape, gaslighting, and torture.
In a statement posted on Instagram, Wood wrote this: “The name of my abuser is Brian Warner, also known to the world as Marilyn Manson. He started grooming me when I was a teenager and horrifically abused me for years. I was brainwashed and manipulated into submission. I am done living in fear of retaliation, slander, or blackmail. I am here to expose this dangerous man and call out the many individuals that have enabled him, before he ruins any more lives.”
Ashley Walter, Sarah McNeilly, Ashley Lindsay Morgan, and Gabriella (last name not given) all shared their own stories today too, each claiming to have been abused by Manson after being heavily wooed and courted by the musician and entering into a relationship with him. They each detail terrifying incidents of violence and cruelty and emphasize the far-reaching psychological ramifications of that time and the PTSD symptoms with which they still struggle.
Wood met Manson when she was 18 years old and he was 36; Gabriella says she was 22 to his 46. “He immediately love bombed me – telling me that he felt like he’d known me for years and I felt similarly,” Gabriella recounts.
“Things went from 0 to 100 at full speed…things had gone downhill very quickly. He would tie me up for the first of many times and rape me. I sobbed on the floor in the hotel room and when I looked at him, he was smiling,” Gabriella continued.
“He made me feel like him cutting me, burning me, his fist in my mouth was ‘our thing,'” Morgan writes similarly. “I wasn’t allowed to eat, or sleep, or leave…I don’t want him to do this to anyone else, and I’ve felt responsible for others getting hurt [for] so long. I just thought it was somehow my fault.”
Manson has denied all such allegations in the past, with his lawyer making this statement to the Hollywood Reporter after a 2018 police report was filed citing sex crimes. “The allegations made to the police were and are categorically denied by Mr. Warner and are either completely delusional or part of a calculated attempt to generate publicity for the claimant’s business of selling Manson memorabilia.”
Woods’ revelation comes on the heels of a number of actor Armie Hammer’s exes coming forward with their own allegations of abuse, and artist FKA Twigs detailing her own experience with allegedly abusive ex Shia La Beouf. In each case, the women coming forward state their alleged abuser’s power and A-list status as one reason they felt they couldn’t come forward. Let’s reward their bravery in coming forward anyway by showing them that even Hollywood elites are not immune from being held responsible.
If you or someone you know has been the victim of sexual assault, harassment or violence, you can get help. To speak with someone who is trained to help with these situations, call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800.656.HOPE (4673) or chat online at online.rainn.org.