Star Trek star George Takei has strongly denied allegations he sexually assaulted a man in the 1980s.
Scott R. Brunton alleged in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter that the 80-year-old gay actor and activist took advantage of him in 1981.
The alleged incident occurred in Hollywood when Brunton, aged 23, was working as a waiter.
Brunton says that he and Takei exchanged numbers after meeting at a gay club, and that they occasionally called one another. Although Brunton had a boyfriend at the time, he says that Takei invited him to dinner and the theater.
“He was a great ear. He was very good about me spilling my heart on my sleeve,” he said.
Later, after Brunton had broken up with his boyfriend, he went to Takei’s Los Angeles home for a drink.
“We have the drink and he asks if I would like another. And I said sure. So, I have the second one, and then all of a sudden, I begin feeling very disoriented and dizzy, and I thought I was going to pass out.
“I said I need to sit down and he said sit over here and he had the giant yellow beanbag chair. So I sat down in that and leaned my head back and I must have passed out.
“The next thing I remember I was coming to and he had my pants down around my ankles and he was groping my crotch and trying to get my underwear off and feeling me up at the same time, trying to get his hands down my underwear.
“I came to and said, ’What are you doing?!’ I said, ’I don’t want to do this.’ He goes, ’You need to relax. I am just trying to make you comfortable. Get comfortable.’ And I said, ’No. I don’t want to do this.’
“And I pushed him off and he said, ’OK, fine.’ And I said I am going to go and he said, ’If you feel you must. You’re in no condition to drive.’ I said, ’I don’t care, I want to go.’
“I managed to get my pants up and compose myself and I was just shocked. I walked out and went to my car until I felt well enough to drive home, and that was that.”
Takei said he was “shocked and bewildered” by the allegations and denied they took place in a series of posts on Twitter.
“I want to assure you all that I am as shocked and bewildered at these claims as you must feel reading them,” Takei said.
“The events he describes back in the 1980s simply did not occur, and I do not know why he has claimed them now. I have wracked my brain to ask if I remember Mr. Brunton, and I cannot say I do.
“Right now it is a he said/he said situation, over alleged events nearly 40 years ago. But those that know me understand that non-consensual acts are so antithetical to my values and my practices, the very idea that someone would accuse me of this is quite personally painful.”
Takei previously condemned actor Kevin Spacey, who controversially “deflected” from his own sexual assault allegation with an announcement about his sexuality.
“Men who improperly harass or assault do not do so because they are gay or straight – that is a deflection,” Takei said of Spacey at the time.
“They do so because they have the power, and they chose to abuse it.”