The sexual assault and misconduct allegations in recent weeks have been fast and furious, affecting everyone from Hollywood producers and personalities to those in the world of professional sports and politics. Now, Lena Dunham is facing major criticisms for her decision to stand behind Girls writer Murray Miller, who stands accused of raping actress Aurora Perrineau when she was just 17 years old.
Miller’s attorney, Matthew Walerstein, also spoke to the publication to “categorically and vehemently ‘deny’ Ms Perrineau’s outrageous claims,” alleging to have gathered “overwhelming evidence directly contradicting these false and offensive claims.”
Walerstein also says Miller’s team was contacted by lawyers on Perrineau’s behalf several weeks ago “seeking substantial monetary damages,” a fact her mother, Brittany Perrineau, denies.
Dunham and her Girls co-creator, Jenni Konner, have since spoken out on the matter to show their support of Miller with a joint statement, saying that while they are thrilled to see “so many women’s voices being heard and dark experiences in the industry justified… there are also incidences of culture, in its enthusiasm and zeal, taking down the wrong targets.” “We believe, having worked closely with him for more than half a decade, that this is the case with Murray Miller,” they said. “While our first instinct is to listen to every woman’s story, our insider knowledge of Murray’s situation makes us confident that sadly this accusation is one of the three percent of assault cases that are misreported every year. It is a true shame to add to that number, as outside of Hollywood women still struggle to be believed. We stand by Murray and this is all we’ll be saying about this issue.”
Dunham has also since released her own statement via Twitter, saying, “I believe in a lot of things, but the first tenet of my politics is to hold up the people who have held me up, who have filled my world with love.”
The response didn’t sit well with many, who noted that the show’s former lead had sung a very different tune back in April, when she tweeted that rape was not something women lie about.
Taking to social media in droves, followers quickly called the 31-year-old to task.
Dunham has not released further comment.
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(Photos via Jamie McCarthy + Lily Lawrence/Getty)