Victim of 'The Predator' Sex Offender Comes Forward to Thank Olivia Munn for Taking a Stand

"I was not able to speak for myself when I was 14. I have no shame for what was done to me. I am not the one who needs to carry that shame," says Paige Carnes, now 24.

The woman who was victimized at age 14 by one of the actors in Shane Black's upcoming film, The Predator, has broken her silence to thank star Olivia Munn for taking a stand on her behalf. 

Paige Carnes, now 24, contacted The Los Angeles Times on Wednesday, seeking to speak for herself for the first time since she was sexually abused by Steven Wilder Striegel, a friend of Black who was cast in a small role in the 20th Century Fox sci-fi film. Striegel pleaded guilty in 2010 for trying to entice a 14-year-old girl into a sexual relationship on the internet. He was 38 at the time.

Carnes, who had not been identified until now, provided the Times with court documents to prove her identity as the Jane Doe in the case. 

Star Olivia Muun, who acted in a scene with Striegel in The Predator, requested the studio cut the scene from the film when she learned of Striegel's criminal past. Black issued an apology for the casting decision.

Carnes praised Munn for her efforts. 

"I was not able to speak for myself when I was 14," she wrote to The Times. "I have no shame for what was done to me," she continued. "I am not the one who needs to carry that shame."

Munn, after issuing her complaint to the studio, said she felt like she received little support from her castmates, which included some even pulling out of press obligations at the Toronto International Film Festival in order to avoid questions on the issue. 

"The positive feedback from social media towards Olivia Munn is uplifting and feels incredibly supportive for me personally," Carnes wrote.

During The Predator's Los Angeles premiere, Black took responsibility for the casting and said he was "deeply sorry" for the pain he caused. He also said he reached out privately to Munn.

"I'm deeply sorry, I really am, for any pain I've caused,” he told The Hollywood Reporter while promoting the film with Munn and the rest of the cast on Wednesday night. “I'm the captain of the ship, right? So it doesn't matter that this guy who I put in the movie is a friend of mine. He was not forthright. He was not honest with me. That doesn't matter, because I'm not allowed to make a decision based on what I think. I had a guy with a criminal past, that's sensitive, to say the least, and I put him in the movie, and I didn't tell the cast and the crew. That's on me. I take full responsibility. That's irresponsible and I shouldn't have done it."

Munn spoke about Carnes coming forward during an appearance on CBS' The Talk on Thursday. The actress said she felt "just blown away" by Carnes' statement and praised Carnes for being brave enough to go public with her true identity. 

"For her to have this strong sense of self to say I don't need [the Jane Doe title to protect victims] anymore and I'm gonna come forward … it just broke me because I just thought about what she has been through to get to that place," Munn said. "I'm so proud of her and she should be so proud of herself."

Munn added, as she saw when she herself accused Brett Ratner of sexual misconduct, "That's the amazing thing about what's happening in the world. It's not the people at the top that we have to depend on to make the changes because they're the people who created the disparity."

She continued, "I was so surprised because I talked to my mom about like, 'I'm probably not going to be in Hollywood anymore, Mom.' And she was like, 'OK, who cares?' You know when you speak out, especially as a woman, especially as a minority woman, it's not going to be pretty. But there's right and there's wrong. I had to speak out and I was really surprised that social media, news, blogs, everyone voiced their support and outrage, and it made me realize we should have a lot of faith in humanity."

And she was hopeful that Carnes' statement would inspire others to come forward.

"For Paige to speak out today, for her to have that courage to put her name out there and give such an eloquent statement with so much strength and power, that won't just cause ripples, it will be waves that will last for so long with other victims and survivors who want to speak out."
 

Read Carnes' full statement to the Times below. 

My purpose in making this statement is to reclaim my identity. Sexual abuse makes people uncomfortable. It should make you uncomfortable. This discomfort is nothing compared to the psychological and physical suffering of those who have dealt with it.

I was not able to speak for myself when I was 14. The consequences of this abuse are profound and permanent for some. When the abuse takes place with a child, it is even harder to overcome. You lose trust in everyone around you, and mainly yourself. Your abuse does not define you. With support from others and strength from within, you can overcome the label of victim and reclaim your identity.

Support can come in many forms. Sometimes all it takes is one person speaking up for you, acknowledging your worth as a human being. I am extremely fortunate to have a father and mother that love me unconditionally. My father has supported me in my healing and growth in ways I cannot thank him enough for.

I am also eternally grateful for Olivia Munn's action. She spoke up for me. She took a stance for me. In turn she stood for all who have suffered like I have. To be acknowledged by a stranger, on a public platform about this issue is incredibly empowering.

The positive feedback from social media towards Olivia Munn is uplifting and feels incredibly supportive for me personally.

I have no shame for what was done to me. I am not the one who needs to carry that shame.

My name is Paige Carnes, former Jane Doe. I hope anyone who has suffered like I have regains their voice and their humanity.

3:04 p.m. This story has been updated with Munn's comments on The Talk on Thursday.