Marilyn Manson Accuser Claims Evan Rachel Wood ‘Manipulated’ Her Into Making False Allegations
Last month, shock rocker Marilyn Manson (Brian Werner) got some good news when a California district judge threw out Ashley Morgan Smithline’s case against him on a procedural issue. Though she was still legally allowed to refile her claims since the suit was dismissed “without prejudice,” it’s not looking like that’s going to be a likely outcome, as she’s now claiming actress Evan Rachel Wood “manipulated” her into filing false claims.
According to a court filing first reported on by the New York Post and corroborated by Billboard, the model turned actress said the Westworld star pressured her into lying about Manson’s alleged sexual abuse.
“I succumbed to pressure from Evan Rachel Wood and her associates to make accusations of rape and assault against Mr. Warner that were not true. Eventually, I started to believe that what I was repeatedly told happened to Ms. Wood and [others] also happened to me.”
For the record, Smithline’s original allegations against Manson included:
- Raping her multiple times, and one occasion telling her “You can’t rape someone that you’re in love with.”
- Multiple forms of physical assault, including biting, whipping, hitting, carving his initials into her thigh, cutting her stomach and drinking her blood (and then making her drink his), breaking her nose, and throwing a knife at her.
- Withholding food (she says she fell to under eighty pounds during their relationship).
- Sending Smithline to a glass box known as the “bad girls’ room” more than 100 times.
- Various forms of psychological abuse.
Her original case against Manson was dismissed after her attorney Jay Ellwanger stepped down from representing her last October. She had until December 5 to find different representation and when she missed that deadline, the case was dismissed without prejudice on January 3.
According to Smithline’s statement, she was first contacted by other victims and after denying that any wrongdoing had happened to her, she was told over and over again that she might not be accurately remembering how things went down.
“While at first I knew Mr. Warner did not do these things to me, I eventually I began to question whether he actually did. On numerous occasions, I was told … that I may just be misremembering what happened, repressing my memories of what happened, or that my memories had not yet surfaced — which they said happened to people against whom these acts were perpetrated.”
After agreeing to file her allegations, Smithline said Illma Gore, a woman said to be helping Wood manufacture the supposed falsehoods, drafted up a statement for the actress to use and posted it online. Shortly thereafter, Ellwanger contacted her for legal representation.
“Leading up to the filing of the complaint, I felt pressured by Mr. Ellwanger to go on a press tour, which included an interview on The View and an interview and photoshoot with People magazine. I was very uncomfortable doing this press but felt pressured to do it.
“Looking back, I feel I was manipulated by Ms. Wood, Ms. Gore, Ms. Bianco, and Mr. Ellwanger to spread publicly false accusations of abuse against Mr. Warner.”
Ellwanger denied Smithline’s statement, though he said he could not get into it due to “ethical obligations regarding client confidentiality,” but he said her allegations were “categorically and verifiably false.”
A representative for Wood also denied that any manipulation had taken place, instead blaming pressure from Manson and his supporters for Smithline’s sudden recanting.
“Evan never pressured or manipulated Ashley. It was Ashley who first contacted Evan about the abuse she had suffered. It’s unfortunate that the harassment and threats Ashley received after filing her federal lawsuit appear to have pressured her to change her testimony.”
Smithline said she never once received any payments from Manson as part of any settlements, stating that she wasn’t going to refile her case.
Manson has been the target of several sexual assault allegations and lawsuits over the past two years from multiple women. The legal maelstrom started when Wood made her initial allegations against the shock rocker on Instagram, with additional allegations following from Smithline, actress Esme Bianco, Manson’s former assistant Ashley Walters, and an unnamed “Jane Doe.”
Throughout the entire ordeal, Manson has maintained his innocence and fired back with counter suits, one of which made the claim that Wood was pressuring other women to make their accusations against the rock star.
Manson’s attorney Howard King responded to the Smithline revelations, stating that it proves the rocker’s innocence.
“As we have always said, the coordinated campaign of #MeToo lies against Brian Warner is going to go down as one of the greatest hoaxes of all time. Vulnerable women were manipulated by unscrupulous individuals seeking to build their own brands and pursue their own vendettas.”
Manson currently has an anti-defamation lawsuit in process against Wood. The actress’ legal representation is trying to get the case thrown out using California’s Anti-SLAPP law, but Manson’s camp is trying to have that motion squashed because of Smithline’s revelations.
You can read Smithline’s entire legal filing alleging pressure from Wood below.