LOS ANGELES >> Terry Crews compares being sexually assaulted to being a prisoner of war and calls the perpetrators of such attacks “terrorists.”
Crews told “Good Morning America” host Michael Strahan today that he was inspired to share his assault allegations against a powerful Hollywood agent after so many women came forward with accusations against Harvey Weinstein.
Crews said he “never felt more emasculated” than when a top agent at William Morris Endeavor groped him at a party last year. Crews named his alleged attacker, describing him as someone who represented Adam Sandler, Sylvester Stallone and Eddie Murphy and “connected to probably everyone I know in the business.”
The agency did not immediately respond to a request for comment today.
Crews confirmed that he filed a police report against the man last week.
“People need to be held accountable,” the former pro-football player and star of TV’s “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” said. “This is the deal about Hollywood: It’s an abuse of power. This guy, again, he’s one of the most powerful men in Hollywood, and he looked at me at the end as if, you know, ‘Who’s going to believe you?’”
Crews said he’d put the incident out of his mind until last month’s news about Weinstein triggered an episode of post-traumatic stress. Crews tweeted about his own harassment experience shortly afterward and told Strahan today that he understands why victims are reluctant to speak up.
“When a person of power breaks that boundary and violates that boundary, you’re a prisoner of war,” he said. “Immediately you’re in a camp, because you’re trying to figure out when is the right time to come out… And you get out and you find freedom, and someone says, ‘Well, it must not be that bad. You should have come out sooner.’
“This is the thing a lot of people just don’t understand, and they end up blaming the victim.”
Crews, 49, became particularly animated when expressing disgust at how such abuses of power thwart the aspirations of innocent victims.
“When someone binds up your dream and holds a gun to its head and says it’s going to kill it if you don’t do this, if you don’t stay quiet, it’s a hostage situation. You are dealing with a terrorist,” he said. “I have my dream. I’ve worked so hard for this… I survived the NFL; I got the entertainment. I’m here, and I get assaulted by my own agent?! It makes no sense and it was foul to the core. It still, still shocks me.”