CW: This story contains mentions of sexual assault.
Shortly after Andrew Callaghan, host of Channel 5, made a statement through his legal representative addressing multiple accusations of sexual harassment and assault, more victims have come forward to discuss their experiences with Callaghan.
As reported by Rolling Stone, then-18-year-old Charlotte matched with 19-year-old Callaghan on Tinder in 2016. She agreed to get coffee with him and then return to his apartment to drink wine and watch a movie. Charlotte alleges that after returning to his apartment, there was an "abrupt shift in tone" and he allegedly kissed her, poured wine on her chest and licked it off. While Charlotte consented to these acts, she said that she was uncomfortable. Callaghan then allegedly grew more persistent and placed her hand on his crotch.
“He wasn’t taking a simple no for an answer, and consequently, it turned into me trying to make up an array of excuses as to why I didn’t want to have sex,” she told Rolling Stone. “He kept insisting that I needed to ‘get him off’ because I was giving him ‘blue balls’ by not having sex with him.”
In texts reviewed by Rolling Stone, Charlotte told friends in 2019 and 2020 that Callaghan was "sexually inappropriate." Her ex-boyfriend also confirmed that she told him about the incident in 2017.
Seattle-based publication The Stranger also spoke to Jane, another woman who experienced Callaghan's coercion. She said she first met him in 2017 in Seattle, Washington. “At first, he’s a very charismatic person and easy to get along with,” Jane said. “Basically right off the bat, I let him know I wasn’t interested.”
Jane's friend told her that Callaghan was known for being "frisky," and she left the meeting "feeling sus." She eventually ran into him in 2018 at a Lower East Side bar in New York. While intoxicated, Jane alleges that Callaghan became sexually aggressive. "At some point, we went to an upstairs area there. There were some other people there at first, but they left. He just started making moves on me. Kissing me, groping me, moving my hands to touch him, forcing my head down."
Jane eventually left the bar and walked to the train. While waiting for the train, Callaghan showed up.
"He had followed me there," recalls Jane to The Stranger. "While I remember him saying throughout the night that he was staying somewhere nearby, he also was saying it wasn’t a good situation and asking if he could stay where I was staying. He was pleading with me to go with him. I yelled at him and told him to go away, I was like, ‘Leave me alone.’ He did leave and I feel like part of the reason he did was because there were other people on the platform that heard me screaming at him.”
In text messages reviewed by the publication, Jane told a friend about what happened and said she was "traumatized." She ran into Callaghan once more after returning to Seattle a week later, alleging that he became "touchy" again. She texted him that he made her uncomfortable and she only wished to be "platonic friends" with him, to which he replied, “ya I didn't think yesterday was uncomfortable" and that he was also “drunk as f in New York." He asked to see her once more and she blocked him.
“I remember hoping that he would take accountability for making me feel uncomfortable and making moves while I was too drunk to consent and it was not an easy message to send,” she said. “I felt that his response brushed it off.”
On TikTok, a third user by the name of @olive.yeahh said she was invited by Callaghan to Golden Gopher in Los Angeles in 2020. Afterward, she said that she went to a house party with Callaghan and some friends. Callaghan allegedly kept asking if they could return to her apartment. She insisted that she wanted to remain friends and did not want to have sex with him. She alleges that Callaghan "repeatedly asked me and pressured me into having sex or giving him a blowjob" until she eventually did.
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Last week, two other women came forward with their stories of Callaghan. One of them, Caroline Elise, alleges that he pressured her into having sex with him after she let him stay with her following an argument with one of his crew members. The second woman, Dana, said she was put off by Callaghan's "demanding" behavior. When she met with him after he said he would apologize to her, he instead propositioned sex. When she tried to drive him home, she alleges that Callaghan began groping her and tried to put her hand down his pants.
Since these accusations came to light, Tim Heidecker denounced Callaghan. Heidecker, alongside longtime comedic partner Eric Wareheim, produced his recent HBO documentary This Place Rules. "We’re aware of the allegations," Heidecker said on his Office Hours podcast. "We take them very seriously. And it’s just been very sad and just disappointing, to say the least. I just want to clarify a couple things: We have no professional relationship with Andrew at this time and have no plans going forward to have any relationship with him."
Shortly after, Callaghan responded. In a full statement provided to Variety, he said:
"Andrew is devastated that he is being accused of any type of physical or mental coercion against anyone. Conversations about pressure and consent are extremely important and Andrew wants to have these conversations, so he can continue to learn and grow. While every dynamic is open to interpretation and proper communication is critical from all those involved, repeated requests for money should not be part of these conversations. With that, balanced communication is paramount to any relationship dynamic and Andrew vows to be better in this regard, while reminding his audience that while even one concerned partner is too many, there are always multiple sides to a story. Andrew is fully committed to working with the appropriate professionals to better understand himself and ways he can grow and improve as a human being, especially with his growing platform and the vulnerabilities it brings."
Callaghan is accusing Elise of requesting money. In text messages shared to the Channel 5 fan subreddit /r/Channel5ive, the texts show that Elise asked for money to help with the medical bills from dealing with the traumatic experience.
Callaghan has not responded to PAPER at this time.
Photo courtesy of HBO
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