Every day, a new accuser steps forward to point their finger at an alleged sexual abuser in Hollywood. Today's suspect comes laced with the undesirable distinction of also being tied into domestic abuse and battery. An unnamed woman is claiming that Transformers and Silicon Valley star T.J. Miller punched and sexually abused her.
The woman says this sexual assault happened while she was in college, and the alleged incident was previously addressed at a student court at George Washington University. Apparently the abuse was known amongst Miller's circle of stand-up comedian friends. The woman recounted what happened to her in vivid detail saying this.
"He just tried a lot of things without asking me, and at no point asked me if I was all right. He choke[d] me, and I kept staring at his face hoping he would see that I was afraid and [that he] would stop... I couldn't say anything."
T.J. Miller's alleged victim is asking to remain anonymous. She claims to be stepping forward because she was encouraged by the recent social awakening that has happened in Hollywood and elsewhere. The woman fears retribution for coming forward. Miller has ascertained for years that he is innocent, and in a new statement released alongside his wife, the comedian paints himself as the victim. Miller says this.
"[This woman] began again to circulate rumors online once [my and Kate's] relationship became public. Sadly she is now using the current climate to bandwagon and launch these false accusations again. It is unfortunate that she is choosing this route as it undermines the important movement to make women feel safe coming forward about legitimate claims against real known predators."
Following Miller's statement, The Daily Beast reports that the unnamed woman's story has been corroborated by five different sources, and includes two separate incidents.
Two individuals claim they were in the off-campus house where this incident took place. They testified in student court that they heard 'violent thuds' and that they saw bruises on the accuser. Three others claim to have comforted the unidentified woman and counseled her in the aftermath. The woman's boyfriend Matt Lord says this about the altercation.
"I attended George Washington University for undergraduate studies from 2000 until December 2003... I had a romantic relationship with [this] woman, who spoke with me about T.J. Miller sexually assaulting her. At the time I believed the statements she made regarding the assault by Mr. Miller, and I continue to believe the statements she made are true. She was engaged in student conduct proceedings regarding the sexual assault, and I remember the emotional toll that the assault and the subsequent conduct hearings placed on her."
Sources in the comedy world claim that T.J. Miller has addressed his own bad behavior by making jokes about it. And he's privately talked about committing violence against woman. Some female comedians have declined to work with Miller in the past, some citing a perceived history of abusive behavior.
The incidents in question allegedly happened while Miller was attending college. The presumed victim and Miller traveled together in the same George Washington University comedy troupe called receSs. And it was during this time that they began a relationship. This all took place back in 2001. The woman went onto say this about her time with T.J. Miller.
"I felt relatively safe with T.J. at the time."
That was before the first troubling encounter, where the woman admits that she had a lot to drink, and doesn't remember parts of the altercation.
"It is important to me to cop to that... [and] I'm not interested in forcing a pretend memory on anyone... 15 years later, I remain terrified of accusing someone of something they didn't do, but I have a visual and physical memory of that."
The woman goes onto recount how the pair were fooling around before Miller started shaking her violently. She also remembers the man punching her in the mouth during sex. She claims she awoke the next morning with a fractured tooth and bloodied lip. Miller claimed the woman had fallen down while drunk. Though the woman was unsettled by the incident she continued to date Miller. She goes into say this.
"I couldn't bring myself [at the time] to believe this had happened. It was me not wanting it to be true."
The woman later received word that she would no longer be participating in receSs and was terribly disappointed. She confided in Miller, believing she could still trust him. They hooked up at a college party and had consensual sex. During this time, Miller once again became unexpectedly violent. The woman claims she had no more than two drinks that evening and remembers everything vividly. She says this about the five hour ordeal.
"We started to fool around, and very early in that, he put his hands around my throat and closed them, and I couldn't breathe. I was genuinely terrified and completely surprised. I understand now that this is for some people a kink, and I continue to believe it is [something] that should be entered into by consenting parties. But, as someone who had only begun having sexual encounters, like, about three months earlier, I had no awareness this was a kink, and I had certainly not entered into any agreement that I would be choked. I was fully paralyzed."
The chocking was allegedly audible through the wall, and roommates checked in. The woman assured them she was okay before returning to her room. That's when things got worse.
"He pulled me back to bed and more things happened. He anally penetrated me without my consent, which I actually believe at that point I cried out, like, 'No,' and he didn't continue to do that, but he also had a [beer] bottle with him the entire time. He used the bottle at one point to penetrate me without my consent."
The alleged incident left the woman stunned. Miller left the next day at 5 am. That's when the victim in this story confided in her roommates. One of the woman present, who wishes to remain unnamed, says this.
"I knew T.J. was in her bedroom and I was in my bedroom, which was a wall away. My [other] roommate was in my bedroom with me and we heard a loud smacking noise, and we were concerned... The very next day when we talked to [Sarah] she was very upset, and... had said he had hit her in a very violent way."
Others the next morning say that the alleged victim's appearance was cause for alarm. In the weeks that followed, Millers relationship with the woman completely dissolved. The only other time they would see each other is when T.J. Miller showed up at a female comedy group show just to heckle the comedians. That incident made the woman mad and she ended up leaving early.
A year passed before the alleged victim took her story to George Washington University police. At the time, Miller was in his last year of school. The woman went onto say this.
"I was not ready to process what was happening [the prior year], and I have spent a lot of time in my life apologizing for not having shouted 'no,' and for not having told my roommates to get him out of here. I was not ready to reconcile the events taking place with the person I had known. It was so disorienting and so physically traumatic."
The woman didn't take the case to off-campus police because there wasn't enough evidence, but her allegations were handled in the university's student court. Other roommates testified in the case. The victim claims she was grilled about all of her various 'habits' during the school trial. The trial period lasted a couple of weeks, the university told her the issue had been resolved. A university spokesperson had this to say to the Daily Beast about the trail.
"Because of federal privacy law, we are not able to provide information about current or former students' education records."
The university did confirm that Miller graduated in 2003. It is noted that Miller was 'expelled after he graduated', which was an outcome that was meant to appease both parties in the case. The alleged victim claims she lost friends because of the incident, especially in her comedy circles, as most supported Miller. Some of those friends spoke off the record, claiming the comedian 'couldn't have done this.' T.J. Miller and his wife Kate knew that the claims were resurfacing again and sent this to The Daily Beast weeks before they reported the case.
"We met this woman over a decade ago while studying together in college, she attempted to break us up back then by plotting for over a year before making contradictory claims and accusations. She was asked to leave our university comedy group because of worrisome and disturbing behavior, which angered her immensely, she then became fixated on our relationship, and began telling people around campus 'I'm going to destroy them' and 'I'm going to ruin him'"
The alleged victim claims this is all false.
"He was a friend to me before [the incidents], and he had been there for me before that. I didn't want him in jail. I didn't hate him. He was someone I cared about... I don't want to mess up his life. But he behaved in a way towards me that I have to live with... [and] I don't think it's appropriate that I carry this by myself."
When the woman making these accusations against T.J. Miller was first approached about telling her story she declined. And it was only later, after the #MeToo movement started, that she changed her mind and decided to come forward. Four separate female comedians and bookers who spoke with The Daily Beast claim they were aware of Miller's misconduct and abuse. And some women in the comedy world have been directly warned about Miller and this alleged behavior. Others claim they heard about the incident directly from Miller himself, who has talked about it in private over the years with fellow comedians. He usually did so in the context of vehemently denying "rumors". Though he has also been known to make jokes about punching women in college.
T.J. Miller recently left his hit sitcom Silicon Valley on HBO even though the show continues to thrive. He is set to appear in a number of upcoming movies opposite such stars as Kristen Stewart and Ryan Reynolds, the later of which he reunites with in Deadpool 2. He is also the creator of Comedy Central's The Gorburger Show, which is about a murderous alien talk-show host. The alleged victim claims she dropped out of the world of comedy after a short time in Los Angeles.
"I had to see him at my improv school [in L.A.], which I, shortly after, stopped going to, and see him at stand-up shows, and I stopped doing stand-up [eventually in L.A.]," Sarah said. "It doesn't help that when I was living in L.A. I had to keep seeing his name on billboards, and on bus stops, and it just didn't... stop."
It isn't clear how these latest accusations will affect T.J. Miller and his employment. A number of accused abusers, such as comedian Louis C.K. and Kevin Spacey, have lost their most recent entertainment jobs and been ousted from Hollywood. The verdict is out on what exactly will happen with T.J. Miller.