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Sitting down for her first television interview with CBS This Morning that will air in full Thursday, the 33-year-old British singer-songwriter and actress (born Tahliah Barnett) told Gayle King that the 34-year-old Transformers star’s alleged abuse was day and night, claiming LaBeouf would wake her up to accuse her of plotting to leave him.
“And I’d be like, ‘I literally was asleep.’ But then he would only want me to sleep naked because he said if I didn’t then I was keeping myself from him,” Barnett told King in a clip of the interview shared Wednesday. “It’s a tactic that a lot of abusers use. It’s just this constant availability, and everything centered around them. And I think that’s why I wanted to come out and talk about this. Because the signs really are there from the beginning.” In his anger over the perceived plotting, LaBeouf would allegedly tell Barnett she was “disgusting” and “vile,” the singer said.
Barnett made international headlines last December when she filed a lawsuit against LaBeouf, where for the first time she outlined the alleged abuse, including claims of sexual battery, assault and emotional distress. The suit also alleges LaBeouf knowingly gave Barnett an STD.
“There wasn’t one set moment,” Barnett told King. “But it’s very subtle. That’s the thing about domestic abuse, domestic violence, that it’s a real gradual step-by-step process to get somebody to a place where they lose themselves so much that they accept or feel like they deserve to be treated in that way. It’s not one thing, it’s loads of tiny little things that get sewn together into a nightmare.”
LaBeouf, who was dropped by his talent agency amid the allegations and has since entered treatment, told the New York Times after the lawsuit was announced, “I’m not in any position to tell anyone how my behavior made them feel. I have no excuses for my alcoholism or aggression, only rationalizations. I have been abusive to myself and everyone around me for years. I have a history of hurting the people closest to me. I’m ashamed of that history and am sorry to those I hurt. There is nothing else I can really say.”
Through his attorney, LaBeouf has denied the lawsuit’s allegations.
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