Weinstein Accuser Details "Petrifying" Experience, Praises Other Victims for Coming Forward
"I don't want anything from Harvey Weinstein, but I do want other women to know that there are people who care that this happened to them," Tomi-Ann Roberts said in an interview on ABC's 'Nightline.'
As women continue to come forward with sexual harassment allegations against disgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein, one of his accusers sat down with ABC's Nightline to clarify her reasons for speaking out.
Speaking to ABC News' Juju Chang, Tomi-Ann Roberts, who was a 20-year-old aspiring actress when she met Weinstein in 1984, recalled feeling "petrified" in the moment the Hollywood producer tried to coerce her to join him in the bathtub.
"He was in the bathtub and he attempted to convince me to get naked, and I didn't," she said. "Looking back, I can't believe this — I apologized. I thought if this is what it's going to take to do serious acting then I guess it's not for me. I think that I really thought that that was kind of my fault, that I was prudish or I was scared."
Roberts affirmed that by sharing her story, she's not looking for anything in return from Weinstein, "but I do want other women to know that there are people who care that this happened to them."
Roberts' interview with Nightline comes after numerous women who have worked with Weinstein or encountered him in a private setting shared their own accounts of sexual assault following two explosive exposes by The New York Times and The New Yorker about the producer's sexual misconduct.
Actresses including Meryl Streep, Jessica Chastain and Jennifer Lawrence have spoken out to condemn Weinstein's "inexcusable" and "disgraceful" behavior. Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie have also come forward to accuse Weinstein of sexually harassment early on in their acting careers.
"Once somebody has the courage to step forward, others come forward too because they finally see there's an audience that cares," said Roberts, adding that she's "ashamed of the fact that I had been so ashamed" at the time.
Roberts, who now teaches the psychology of sexual objectification, praised Streep, Lawrence and other stars for joining the chorus: "We're a culture that's obsessed with Hollywood and the media. To have these amazing actresses who are so much in the public eye say something that forceful, to me, is just the greatest thing I've heard in a long time."