NPR reported that a 22-year-old woman filed a civil lawsuit on Tuesday in the Los Angeles Superior Court against comedian, actress and author Tiffany Haddish and Comedian Aries Spears for her and her brother. The lawsuit accused the two celebrities of sexual abuse when they were minors.
The woman filed under the name Jane Doe and referred to a brother as John Doe, who is still a minor. They alleged that Haddish and Spears took advantage of their youth and pressured them into performing “sexually explicit child pornography skits.”
The girl was 14, and her brother was seven.
In the lawsuit, Jane Doe explained that two separate incidents occurred when she and her brother were sexually abused. Jane Doe’s abuse occurred in 2013 when she was pressured to mimic fellatio for a video. John Doe was coerced into appearing in a 2014 film in only his underwear, which featured Haddish and Spears.
The video’s title, Through a Pedophile’s Eyes,” surfaced on all corners of the internet. Edited versions of the film are on YouTube. Funny Or Die had it on its website but removed it after seeing the disturbing footage uploaded on its site.
“Funny Or Die found this video absolutely disgusting and would never produce such content,” a spokesperson told NPR. “We were not involved with the conceptualization, development, funding, or production of this video. It was uploaded to the site as user-generated content and was removed in 2018 immediately after becoming aware of its existence.”
Haddish’s attorney, Andrew Brettler, asserted that the claims against Haddish are spurious and claimed the lawsuit is the mother’s attempt to discredit Haddish.
“Every attorney who has initially taken on her case— and there were several— ultimately dropped the matter once it became clear that the claims were meritless and Ms. Haddish would not be shaken down,” Brettler said. “Now, [she] has her adult daughter representing herself in this lawsuit. The two of them will together face the consequences of pursuing this frivolous action.”
Spears’ attorney, Debra Opri, commented that her client “isn’t going to fall for any shakedown.”
Jane Doe wasn’t surprised that Brettler defended Haddish and said he has been backing celebrities accused of sexual abuse.
“We are not surprised that Mr. Brettler would attempt to divert the attention away from the legitimate claims filed by my brother and me, to shift the blame and attention to our mother– who is not a party to this lawsuit.”
According to the plaintiffs, their mother introduced them to Haddish and Spears, describing the actress as a “longtime family friend.”
In addition to the lawsuit, Jane Doe requested that the Los Angeles Police Department arrest and charge Spears and Haddish.