A California appeals court has revived a sexual assault suit against Marilyn Manson, overturning an earlier verdict that said his former assistant Ashley Walters waited too long to bring her case.
The state’s Second Appellate District’s ruling pertains to the lawsuit filed by Walters, who had claimed Manson subjected her to brutal treatment, including sexual harassment and discrimination, during the year that she worked for him from 2010 to 2011.
A lower court had ruled last year that the statute of limitations requires cases such as the one filed against Manson to be filed within two years. However, the appeals court said Walters’ case was fair game under the so-called delayed discovery rule, as she claims the trauma of the incidents caused her to suppress the memories until 2020.
“Until she received diagnosis and treatment, Walters [says she] was unable to remember the repressed events, and once she did recall them, she was unable to immediately identify these events as abuse,” the appeals court wrote in a 24-page ruling. “These allegations of suppressed memories and psychological blocking are sufficient to withstand [dismissal].”
In the lawsuit in 2021, Walters claimed that Manson subjected her to “sexual exploitation, manipulation and psychological abuse” while she worked for him as a personal assistant. The alleged abuse included whipping her and throwing her against a wall in a “a drug-induced rage”; forcing her to stay awake for 48 hours by feeding her cocaine; and having “offered” her sexually to friends and associates.
Apart from Walters, several other women, including Manson’s former fiancé Evan Rachel Wood, Game of Thrones actress Esmé Bianco and model Ashley Morgan Smithine filed suits against the singer in 2021.
Following the appeals court ruling, the case now goes back to the trial court.
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