Warning: This article may be triggering for some readers. Please read at your own discretion.
Kevin Connolly, the American actor and filmmaker, has been accused of sexually assaulting an assistant costume designer during a wrap party for his directorial debut, Gardener of Eden (2007), back in December 2005.
The alleged victim, Gracie Cox, came forward with her story on Wednesday (July 15) — nearly 15 years after the alleged incident took place. She told the Daily Beast that Connolly, 46, had asked her to “go with him for a smoke,” before taking her to an empty “VIP lounge area” where he allegedly kissed her, before pulling down her pants and assaulting her.
Though Cox admitted that she didn’t go out with Connolly to smoke, she said that she simply “didn’t want to be rude” by rejecting the Entourage star’s offer.
“As soon as we were alone in that area, he started to kiss me,” Cox said to the outlet. “I didn’t know how to respond, but before I could even think about what to do about it, he pulled me into one of these little side (booths), pulled down my pants, turned me around and, within no time, was inside of me,” she added.
The cast and crew celebrated the completion of Connolly’s yet-to-be-released at Butter — a since-closed Manhattan restaurant. Cox claimed that she was only at the party for an hour before the director had approached her and allegedly assaulted her.
“There was not really a chance in my mind to object or resist,” she continued of the alleged incident. “It just happened really fast. I froze and was in shock.”
“Nothing like that had ever happened to me before in any way, shape or form,” Cox said. “I was completely caught off guard.”
Additionally, Cox claimed that Connolly had ejaculated inside of her, without protection.
She continued: “He took a pillow off of a couch, threw it at me, and told me to ‘clean myself up.’ He then told me that he was going to leave and to wait a few minutes because he didn’t want anyone to see us together.”
Cox claimed that while working on Gardener of Eden, Connolly frequently flirted with her. She later told the Daily Beast that on the night of the alleged incident, she confided her story in fellow costume designer and boss Amy Westcott.
Cox said that upon hearing of the alleged assault, Westcott confronted Connolly at the party. A representative of Connolly later confirmed this to Global News.
In a lengthy statement, the spokesperson denies Cox’s allegations on the actor/director’s behalf, while suggesting the “incident” was consensual.”
The spokesperson added that upon learning of the encounter,”Westcott had “expressed her disappointment” with both Cox and Connolly.
“Kevin acknowledges the lack of professionalism on his part, but he adamantly denies that it was anything other than a mutual consensual encounter” or “that it was assault,” the statement reads.
The representative wrote that Connolly was “completely shocked to learn of the allegations made by Gracie Cox,” before claiming that “Gracie shared with Kevin that she was embarrassed after getting in trouble” with Westcott, her boss, following the encounter.
Connolly’s team even cited IMDb, saying that neither Cox nor Westcott had worked with one another since Gardener of Eden.
The statement continues: “Kevin strongly supports victims of sexual assault and believes their claims should always be heard. As someone who has worked in this industry for four decades, he has treated people with nothing but respect and has maintained a stellar reputation.”
As of this writing, Connolly has not made public comment in regards to the allegations.
If you or someone you know is in crisis and needs help, resources are available. In case of an emergency, please call 911 for immediate help.
Are you or someone you know experiencing abuse? Visit the Department of Justice’s Victim Services Directory for a list of support services in your area.
Women, trans and non-binary people can find an additional list of resources here.