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Weinstein scandal prompts actors Terry Crews, James Van Der Beek to share harassment stories

Actors Terry Crews, left, and James Van Der Beek. (Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times; Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)
Actors Terry Crews, left, and James Van Der Beek. (Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times; Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)

In the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, actors Terry Crews and James Van Der Beek have also blasted some high-powered men in Hollywood for harassing them.

In separate revelations on Twitter this week, the "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" star and "Dawson's Creek" alum, respectively, shared their tales of being victimized by industry heavyweights, whom they did not name. Their stories served as additional examples of a purported rampant culture of sexual misconduct in the entertainment industry -- a culture being scrutinized because of the downfall of the former Weinstein Co. co-chairman.

Crews, giving his account in 16 tweets on Tuesday, claimed that the Weinstein scandal gave him post-traumatic stress and alleged that he had been groped by a "high level Hollywood executive" during an industry function he was attending last year.

"Jumping back I said What are you doing?! My wife saw everything n we looked at him like he was crazy. He just grinned like a jerk," he tweeted, adding, "I was going to kick his ass right then— but I thought twice about how the whole thing would appear."

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The optics of a 240-pound black man stomping a Hollywood honcho were not ideal for him, the former NFL star explained, and an altercation likely would have landed him in jail. 

The "Everybody Hates Chris" alum said that he talked to everyone he knew about what happened and the exec even called him the next day to apologize, but "never really explained why he did what he did."

He decided to let it go because he didn't want to be ostracized.

Though the actor said he loves what he does, he added that it's a shame and disappointing when someone tries to take advantage of that.

As for the accused, Crews said "he knows who he is" and that Crews had revealed his identity to "everyone who needed to know."

"I understand and empathize with those who have remained silent. But Harvey Weinstein is not the only perpetrator," he tweeted. "Hollywood is not the only business [where] this happens, and to the casualties of this behavior— you are not alone."

The 49-year-old hoped that telling his story  would "deter a predator and encourage someone who feels hopeless."

Since then, Van Der Beek offered his story on Thursday for anyone "judging the women who stayed silent" and for perspective on the "boys being boys" defense that's been made to excuse wrongdoers' actions.

"What Weinstein is being accused of is criminal. What he’s admitted to is unacceptable - in any industry. I applaud everybody speaking out," the 40-year-old tweeted.

Van Der Beek wrote that when he was younger he had been cornered by "older, powerful men" who fondled him and engaged him "in inappropriate sexual conversations," adding, "I understand the unwarranted shame, powerlessness & inability to blow the whistle. There’s a power dynamic that feels impossible to overcome."

As the actor's revelation gained traction, Van Der Beek amended his complaint by saying that the people he accused of harassment were relatively unknown to most; two of them were charged by others and punished and the other has since died.

"Apologies to any mentors & champions and wonderful friends I’ve made in this industry who may have been pulled into wrongful speculation," he wrote. "I realize I left a door open by not initially naming, but please don’t impugn innocent people w/out cause. That’s not fair. Or right."

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